Team TotalEnergies riders have been seen at a pre-season training camp wearing mystery shoes that we think could be yet-to-be-released Specialized S-Works 8s.
As we wait for the 2022 road racing season to get underway, there is little else for fans to do but gaze enviously at the sunny shots of the pros training in warm locations. With so many photos being taken, any unreleased product gets spotted quickly and what looks like an S-Works 8 road shoe has been spotted on the feet of Team TotalEnergies riders which is Peter Sagan’s new team.
Custom shoe specialist VeloKicks (their Insta is worth a follow) noticed them and pointed out some key differences from the S-Works 7 shoes that we reviewed back in 2019. With the design being quite old now, it’s no surprise to see something new in the pipeline from Specialized.
While a redesign might be due, Specialized has only just released the S-Works 7 Lace which would make the imminent arrival of an S-Works 8 shoe slightly strange.
Back to the shoes in question and the most noticeable difference, as VeloKicks points out, is the removal of the velcro strap down at the forefoot.
The removal of that velcro strap appears to have led to a slight repositioning of the Boa dials, though these continue to attach directly across the shoe with a simple lacing pattern.
> Your complete guide to Specialized’s road shoe range
The pictures do not show it clearly, but we believe the Varus Wedge that Specialized has used in its high-end shoes for a number of years now to remain. We’d also expect the tight heel cup to be retained.
And if you wanted some concrete proof that this is indeed a new S-Works shoe from Specialized, French sprinter Geoffrey Soupe confirmed it on his Instagram page, replying to a fan that simply asked.
> Review: Specialized S-Works Ares shoes
Interestingly, the shoes that Soupe is wearing do not seem to feature any perforations in the upper. These are usually used to aid ventilation, though we can’t see that being an issue in January.
When will be seeing these shoes? We've asked Specialized, but we're expecting them to remain tight lipped.
how very woke.. want to cancel him?
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