After 16 years and over 100,000 miles of use I’ve decided to retire my British made Altberg Clubman Roadster boots, they are still waterproof, warm in the winter and comfortable but they were just starting to feel their age, so the hunt was on for a replacement boot.
I did originally look at replacing them with a new pair of Altberg’s but due to the long delivery times (6 weeks), I decided to look at what other boots were on the market and to maybe try something different.
Bob and Bonzo had always loved the boots made by German company Daytona and their top of the range Road Star GTX seemed to have the best reviews, and so they should for the crazy price of £359 but thankfully Sportsbikeshop.co.uk had a great offer on finance so I decided to bite the bullet and purchased a pair.
In typical Sportsbikeshop.co.uk fashion, the boots arrived the next day, very well packaged and it was time to go out and play. (well you have to test new kit straight away!)
The first thing I noticed was that the Road Star GTX boots are very unusual as they have double zips on each foot instead of the usual 1 on the left and right of the foot (think 10 and 2 on a clock face) the next thing I noticed was how well built and comfortable they felt straight away, OK they would need some breaking in of the left foot to help with the up and down movement when changing gear bit not as much as my Altberg’s required.
So far so good, I’ve done about 1,000 miles in these boots and while I don’t want to even think about their cost I do like them and they definitely seem as good as my previous Altberg’s and look a little more stylish but I’ve yet to try them in the cold of winter.
So, after less than 7,000 miles and 14 months of use, my Daytona Road Star GTX boots failed me, On a recent ride around North Wales I started noticing a slight discomfort when changing gear that started getting worse and eventually got to the point that it was very painful to flex my foot upwards to change up a gear, I had to stop and take off my left boot and sock and I found I had a large cut in my foot! I put my hand inside my boot and found that the inside of the boot the inner lining had broken and there was a piece of what felt like plastic had snapped in half and this was pressing against my foot. Luckily I always carry a first aid kit so I covered my foot with a large plaster and this allowed me to continue my ride home.
I contacted Sportsbikeshop.co.uk and they claimed they had never heard of this issue but they did inform me that the boots only had a 12-month warranty, not what you want to hear 14 months in after spending £359. To their credit, they agreed to have the faulty boot back and to send it back to Daytona for inspection and if they agreed it was faulty, they would arrange a to have it repaired free of charge, and that’s exactly what happened, I sent the boot back to Sportsbikeshop.co.uk and they then sent it back to Daytona in Germany who repaired the boot and after 6 weeks I had it back.
To be fair, Sportsbikeshop.co.uk did tell me that it would be approximately a 6-7 week turn around as the factory in Germany was just about to go into a 2-week shutdown so I knew that I would be without my boots for nearly 2 months so I visited my local bike shop (Bikers World in Colehill) and bought myself a pair of Richa Nomad boots and I must admit, I was very surprised by the Richa boots, they are fantastic quality and very comfortable and only £79, there’s a lesson to be learnt there.