MXA PRODUCT TEST: GAERNE SG10 BOOT

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WHAT IS IT?

A boot that has built its rep on toughness, strength and durability.

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WHAT’S IT COST?

$349.95 ($369.95 for faux carbon fiber)(800) 426-0213.

www.gaerneusa.com

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WHAT’S IT DO?

Gaerne has a three-boot line for the 2006 season. The affordable boot is the new $189 Cypher (it replaces the venerable RX2). The mid-price boot is the all-new Fastback, which blends elements of the top-of-the-line SG10 into a $260 package. Gaerne’s high-priced boot, the boot that Mike LaRocco wore to fame and fortune, is the SG10. The MXA wrecking crew likes the SG10 because it is a rugged boot with a stiff sole, plush footwell, wide toe box and hinged ankle.

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WHAT STANDS OUT?

Here’s a list of things that stand out with Gaerne’s SG10 boot.

(1) Fit. The sizing is spot-on. If you are a size ten in a street shoe, you’ll be a size 10 in an SG10. The buckle system is easy to use and offers enough expendability to accommodate the largest of calves and knee braces. To help in adjustability this year, the buckle adjusters have been changed from plastic to steel.

(2) Comfort. Motocross racers come in two types: bootie and non-bootie wearers. Gaerne plays to both types with a non-bootie boot that mimics the feel of a bootie with plush padding so that the rider’s foot can snuggle down inside the boot. Additionally, three of the SG10’s four buckles are designed to float with the hinged razor back. This stops the boot from crimping at the ankle.

(3) Durability. Over the last two years, the SG10 has proved to be solid as a rock.

(4) Hinge. While not completely separate from the rest of the boot, the SG10 has an inner boot and an outer boot. The outer boot is attached with a Heckel-style hinge. This system allows more ease of motion, while keeping the ankle portion strong and stiff. The razor back hinge is normally white (except for the carbon fiber version) highlighted by silver panels.

(5) Sole: We like the fact that the SG10’s sole is stiff enough to jump big air landings without excessive flex.

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WHAT’S THE SQUAWK?

We have two quibbles:

(1) The SG10 boot felt wide at the ankle (because of the hinge).

(2) The SG10 is heavy.

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