March 17, 2023
With all-day adventures in mind, UDOG has created a gravel shoe with comfort in mind
Alberto Fonte knows a thing or two about cycling shoes. For over 15 years he has been in the cycling industry, working for brands such as Pinarello, Kask and most recently Fizik. After taking all his knowledge over the years, Fonte decided to launch his own brand, and in 2021 he launched UDOG, a brand dedicated to making high-performance cycling shoes.
Last year, when the brand launched its Cima and Tensione road cycling shoes, UDOG announced itself as one to watch when it came to high performance and stylish road shoes. But like many other brands, UDOG has seen the boom in the gravel sector and expanded its product range to cater to the market, launching its first gravel shoe: the Distanza. Appealing to two types of gravel racers, the Distanza comes in two models: the Distanza in gray and the Distanza Carbon in black.
The only difference between the two styles is the fabric used and the weight. The carbon edition is made of full carbon fabric with a carbon composite rubber sole and weighs 315g (size 42). The standard Distanza is made of nylon fabric with a carbon-reinforced rubber sole and weighs a bit more at 330g (size 42). The carbon edition is said to be more like a performance road shoe in terms of stiffness, while the nylon shoe is more relaxed. Despite the increased weight of the standard Distanza, the Distanza is one of the lightest gravel shoes on the market.
Both styles feature the unique rubber sole that wraps around the toe and under the shoe, providing added protection and durability. While it has its practical aspects, the rubber sole also adds a tough, rugged element to the shoe’s look, and its contrast with the fabric upper adds to its eye-catching design.
Designed for all-day gravel adventures, UDOG has developed these shoes with comfort in mind and says the shoe offers a generous toe box and deep heel cup, to prevent feet from feeling too compacted in the shoe even after hours of riding. Complemented by the lightweight and breathable fabric, UDOG says it ensures comfort on any journey.
Using UDOG’s tension wrap system as the brand did with their Tensione road shoes, the Distanza also supports the bottom of the foot from the vamp to the bridge, aiming to provide an optimal fit and ride feel throughout your pedaling. Laminated straps that sit on the side of the shoes connect to the lace and tighten as you sand the shoe.
Opting for laces instead of the Boa fit system that most high-performance shoe manufacturers use, the Italian brand says this provides full foot support while riding. The flat, pressed design of the laces ensures that not only will they not come undone, but they will also stay in place, even on the longest rides. To make sure there are no loose laces with the potential to snag, the brand has implemented a lace closure system that allows you to carefully clip the ends of the laces to the top of the shoe’s tongue.
The Distanza gravel shoes RPR at £160 / €180 for the ash gray and £220 / €250 for the ash black carbon.
The UDOG Distanza is now available for purchase on the UDOG website: www.udog.cc