The Tour de France is one of the biggest sporting events on the planet, and with the world’s media descending on the race, every bike, components and accessories manufacturer is vying for some attention.
It is no surprise then that some brands create custom designs to showcase their best products on their best-sponsored riders. Here we take a look at the best custom shoe designs spotted at this year’s race.
Mark Cavendish’s Nike Superfly 360
Mark Cavendish worked alongside long-term sponsor Nike to create the Superfly360 cycling shoe in full Flyknit construction ahead of the Tour de France.
Inspired by Cavendish’s memories of watching the FIFA World Cup 20 years ago in France, where Ronaldo wore the first pair of Nike Mercurial football boots, Cavendish wanted to recreate the aesthetic from that era and two designs were commissioned by Nike for the Manx Missile.
A high silver and blue lace-up design was worn by Cavendish in the early stages of the race before the 30 times Tour de France stage winner switched to orange Nike Mercurials — note the pearlescent sole on the underside of the orange shoes.
Romain Bardet’s Mavic Comete Ultimate Tour de France Limited Edition
France’s best Tour de France hope for the yellow jersey lay in Romain Bardet. The 27-year-old has been a partner of legendary French manufacturer Mavic for several seasons now and as well as riding a custom painted bike from Factor, Mavic has provided Bardet with limited edition Mavic Cosmic wheels alongside the unique Mavic Comete Ultimate shoes — which were first seen back in 2016 on Dan Martin.
A white inner sock is wrapped in a white carbon shell to create a stiff and low stack shoe. While the Mavic decals on the exterior also have a design within the lettering that celebrates the regions of France that the race travels through.
Rigoberto Uran’s Sidi Shot
Riding for Cannondale-Drapac and finishing second to Chris Froome by less than a minute in last year’s Tour, Rigoberto Uran’s team found new sponsors for 2018 in EF Education First-Drapac and opted for a bold, fluoro pink and green kit design to celebrate its new partners.
The American-registered squad’s kits, helmets and bikes make them easy to spot in the Tour de France bunch and Uran has gone one step further with these Sidi Shot shoes that have also been given the hot-pink treatment.
Bob Jungels’ S-Works 7
Specialized released an updated version of its range-topping S-Works shoes during the 2018 season-opener at the Tour Down Under.
Initially worn by only Specialized-sponsored WorldTour teams, more and more riders from different teams in the peloton are choosing to wear the S-Works 7 shoes, speaking volumes for the quality of the shoe.
Several riders have customised the proprietary Boa dials to match their team colours and Quick-Step Floors’ Bob Jungels has gone one step further with a decal on the sole of his shoes to celebrate his Luxembourg national road race and time trial titles.
While the uppers of the shoes remain plain white, when paired with the white socks of Quick-Step Floors this subtle customisation of the sole is a classy and understated touch, and one that isn’t replicated by any other rider at the Tour.
Alexander Kristoff’s European champion Northwave Extreme RR
Crowned as European road race champion last August, Alexander Kristoff has been wearing a bold white kit for the 2018 season, draped in the blue stripes and gold stars of the European flag.
Alongside the Norwegian’s bold kit choice is a custom MET helmet and Northwave Extreme RR shoes in a matching design.
Northwave partnered with Kristoff for the 2018 season following his switch to UAE Team Emirates from Katusha-Alpecin and presented the one-day specialist with the shoes back in January, but we think they’re still stand outs among the rest in July.