Our first impression on pulling on Wiggle’s new own-brand budget race shoe is that of plush, foot-hugging comfort. The looks are classy too, the solid white synthetic leather uppers, subtle red touches and reflective silver graphics an aesthetic improvement over the previous R1.0.
The tried and tested three-strap Velcro system is extremely effective and not only lets you get the fit right every time but is light and durable. Ventilation is okay, with retro-style breather holes punched on the top of the roomy toe box, at the sides and at the back of the well-padded heel, as well as small mesh panels on either side between the straps.
Because there is no ventilation directly into the toe box other than the 12 holes in the top, and the padding is quite thick, these are quite warm shoes on the hottest days. The flipside is that the R1.0s are well suited to a wet and breezy British summer.
The fibreglass-reinforced nylon polymer sole is smooth other than the good-sized grey grippy pads on the heel and toe for safer walking, with fitting points for three-hole cleats such as Look and SPD-SL.
There are no guide marks to help position your cleats, though. You’ll also see the two parallel slots for Shimano’s two-hole SPD pedal system’s cleats, but using these will mean altering your shoes permanently and Wiggle don’t recommend it.
On the bike the shoe still feels comfy and supportive, with early worries about rubbing around the ankle from the high-cut opening never proving a problem. There is an admirable lack of flex in the nylon sole, giving efficient power transfer.
Carbon fibre is undeniably lighter and stiffer, but you can’t expect it at this fantastically low price, and the R1.0 is still stiff and light enough for sportives, training and even entry-level racing.
This article was originally published in Cycling Plus magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.