DRIRIDER Women’s iRide 2 Protective Casual Sneaker are a great on and off bike option. Review: By Samantha Kimber
When you’re a size 10 in women’s shoes (41 European), it can be difficult to find a pair of motorcycle boots that are the right size and aren’t men’s. I have one pair of motorcycle boots. They’re served me well for the last five years or so, but they’re actually a men’s pair (not a unisex style, just a small pair of men’s).
At the time of purchase there weren’t any women’s boots available in my size so I made a compromise on an inconspicuous pair that fit. I don’t mind them, they do the job, but my husband owns the same pair in his size.
There is a space in the market for a women’s casual, street boot that’s available in a broad range of women’s sizes and the DriRider Women’s iRide 2 Protective Casual Sneaker fills this need and at $149.95 RRP they are great value.
With the look of a sneaker and the protection of a motorcycle boot, the iRide 2 is technically a unisex style, with a few colours available in women’s sizes; the MC-1 in black and the Delicious in purple (both leather).
They are easily mistaken for a casual non-motorcycle sneaker and in purple they draw attention, in fact I’ve had many a compliment appreciating the style and colour and many more surprised by the fact they are motorcycle boots.
The styling is more casual than a motorcycle boot which is perfect; as a scooter rider, motorcycle boots can sometimes feel inappropriate or over the top. The main benefit of this style is the ability to wear them on and off the bike.
The iRide has a very strong construction made with a leather upper, a HIPROA waterproof and breathable liner, and polyester lining with open cell foam for added comfort. This construction means they are less breathable than a leather/ textile combination, but given my daily commutes are not in the heat of the day this is less of an issue. They also feature a lace closure; no zips, straps or Velcro.
The boot is available in women’s 35 to 41 European sizes (approximately 4 to 10 Australian), which should fit most women. If you happen to be larger, men’s sizes are also available, with a broader range of colours.
I found the length true to size, however the width was larger than expected. When laced all the way up there isn’t much length to pull the laces tighter, I attribute this to the thickness of the leather and width of the tongue. When tied to the top there should be no issues with laces snagging and the extra width is ideal for thick socks.
That said, despite the width I found the boots hard to pull on. There isn’t much give in the material or laces (although I hope this will ease as the leather wears in) though they feature a handy loop on the back to pull the boot on. However, I’m reassured if they’re sometimes hard to get off I know they won’t pull off in a crash.
The iRide 2 comes up just above the ankle. I’ve found skinny and straight leg jeans tuck in and a boot cut fits over the top. At first, the boot was stiff and uncomfortable to walk in however this improved with time.
In terms of protection the boot is double stitched and features shock absorbing latex foam at the ankle and an anti-twist moulded mid sole. This coupled with the heavy-duty leather, tight cross-over lacing, and ankle height assures both foot and ankle protection. Given the style of the boot the iRide 2 does lack the additional armour typically found in most motorcycle boots and the ankle height is a compromise on upper calf protection.
I would highly recommend the boots for women who ride motorcycles as they feature a techno GI thermoplastic toe cap and heel which are perfect for changing gears and braking. The boots also feature a vulcanised high density rubber sole, which I found to grip well on all surfaces, including wet oily road surfaces. Although simple in design the soles are hard and I expect wear to take a decent length of time.