New Shimano S-Phyre shoes worn by van der Poel
We spotted Mathieu van der Poel wearing what appears to be the fourth iteration of Shimano’s S-Phyre road shoes.
In a video posted to his Instagram, van der Poel is seen getting ready for a ride where he swaps pool slides for a pair of Shimano shoes which appear to have a number of differences from the S-Phyre RC902 road shoes of Shimano – the current version of the brand’s top-of-the-range road shoe.
First, the heel of van der Poel’s shoe is white. No current shoes in the RC902 line have a white heel cup. Instead, the heel cup of currently available RC902s is silver.
There also appears to be a different lacing setup, with van der Poel’s shoes having what look like fabric lace loops rather than plastic clips on the toe box.
Branding is also subtly different, with no ‘S-Phyre’ logo splashed along the outer edge of the Alpecin-Fenix rider kicks.
Admittedly, the details of van der Poel’s Instagram video are hard to fathom, but given that the RC902 was released in September 2020, and we’ve only seen a limited edition Dura-Ace since then, the possibility of a new flagship road bike shoe from Shimano seems likely.
The fact that the shoes spotted on van der Poel’s Instagram don’t look too different visually from the current version of the shoes is perhaps not so surprising either.
If Shimano has listened to people wearing the current S-Phyre, they will know that the shoe has often been criticized, with some finding it narrower than its predecessor.
So really, the new version could be mostly a change to the construction and fit of the shoe rather than a drastic overhaul.