Sugoi Zap shoe covers strike a good balance between insulation and aerodynamics, with reflective material for aided visibility in poor weather.
Shoe covers seem simple on paper but the wealth of different options and manufacturers' attempts quickly make you realise that this is not the case. Sugoi Zap shoe covers fall into the high performance segment, for those that want a their feet to stay dry on long training rides and look good while doing it.
They are constructed from a polyester/Lycra material that provides a good deal of stretch - similar to what you might expect from a time trial shoe cover - and will actually hold around the shoe well even before closing the zip. Said zip is kindly positioned to the right of the Achilles tendon, zipping from the ankle up, creating a tight seal that stops water ingress down the leg.
Clearly the designers at Sugoi have experienced some of the overshoes that I have, with inflexible material throughout restricting movement. At the back - where there is most movement - their solution is a more flexible nylon material. Wwith the off-centre zip it helps prevent and irritation after prolonged use.
In terms of water proofing, I found the Zaps were up to scratch. The material is thin and barely permeable - a bit like a dry suit. The only way your feet will get wet is through vents and cleat holes in the base. As the material is more like a dry suit than a wet suit, there isn't much insulation but because they are wind proof, wind chill is less of a factor. I used them down to around 5°C.
Another benefit of the Zap overshoes is that they are highly reflective. Making your feet glow is an ideal way to improve visibility to other road users because they are moving at 90rpm. For a piece of kit that is generally used in poor light I think it's a really good move.
All these features don't come cheap. Priced at the top end of overshoes, Sugoi ask for £55. Like most items, they can be found for less, with the going price around £40. Still a hefty chunk of money when you may consider other options before riding in the conditions these will thrive! However, they are priced similarly to other race-orientated overshoes such as Castelli's, and if you find your self riding in wet gloomy weather, they'll be worth every pound.
The Sugoi Zap shoe covers are a superb option for wet weather training rides or racing, were comfort is key. Reflective material through the upper body of the foot will help visibility in these gloomy rides. If you find yourself out in the rain a lot, with wet feet, they will prove a worthy addition to your wardrobe.
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Make and model: Sugoi Zap Shoe Cover
Size tested: Large, Silver
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Designed to provide a water resistant cover for racers and those training. Given the price, I don't think they're aimed at commuters but given the visibility and weather proofing they'd do a fine job.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Elastane material offering stretch, tight fit.
Soft nylon along Achilles tendon area.
Solid, don't feel like they'll fall apart after a few walks through cafes.
Water proofing is excellent.
Quite expensive at SRP, can be found cheaper.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Great water resistance shoe covers, that kept my feet warm and dry down to around 5°C.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Reflective material really does glow, even in low light.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes - in a sale.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Age: 25 Height: 184cm Weight: 68kg
I usually ride: Giant TCR Advanced 1 My best bike is: Giant TCR Advanced 1
I've been riding for: Under 5 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Semi pro
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, club rides, mtb,