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DCC Product Review – Vitesse Moto “Glove” Riding Boots

Wednesday, November 9, 2011 4:19:41 PM America/New_York

When it comes to choosing a pair of riding boots there are a myriad of things that come into question. Important thoughts such as, “Will they protect my ankle area properly?” “How hard are they to get on and off?” or “Do they offer good walking traction and comfort when not riding?” And that doesn’t even include thoughts around cost and aesthetics, which for most of us, are two important factors.

All of these questions make choosing that perfect set of boots quite a difficult and laborious process. How many of you have spent hours reading online reviews looking at a sea of photos only to still feel left with that question – “Is this the right boot for me?” Well, consider your questions answered, Ace! The DCC Crew has been putting the full range of Vitesse Moto’s boots through some real honest to God ton-chasing coffee tasting testing over the past few months and you’ll be pleased to hear the results are outstanding.

In this review we will dig deeper into the “Glove” boot, the most popular and most diverse in the entire Vitesse line-up. Stay tuned though, in the months to come we will also explore the other fine offerings Vitesse has made available for those of us chasing the ghosts of vintage speed.

First things first, I’ll admit I was a bit shy to the idea of wearing a modern-ish boot like the Vitesse Glove simply being that I ride vintage bikes 95% of the time. Call me a fashionista if you will and laugh all you want, but there’s just something about the way a pair of vintage boots looks and feels when you’re riding a twin cylinder Cafe Racer. You know, big woolen socks over the boot, that worn and semi soft rubber under your heals and the feeling of that zipper running up the calf. It not only looks good, it feels good too. Well, after slipping on the Glove’s for the first time and taking a spin around the DCC loop I can tell you that my opinion was changed about as quick a Grimeca 4LS hub can bring a CB350 from 100 to 0.

Almost immediately I felt more confident as a rider. It’s as though the feeling of my foot “popping” into its place inside the V-Cockpit as I slid the Glove over my heal, the zipping of the side calf protector area and the closure of the sturdy velcro side resonated in my psyche and said “You’re protected now, you can push the limit.” When riding, the feeling of the strong impact resistant heal found on the Glove against the hand turned rear-sets on my trusty steed was a match made in heaven despite my initial thoughts. It was as though I had a better connection to the machine and my ability to steer it into corners tighter and faster was amplified as a result of it.

Running up to the quarter mile mark just past the shop the engine revs; 2nd, 3rd and 4th gear. I’m close to the TON, I learn hard left steering with my feet and the bike pulls towards the pavement fighting gravity. Like a champion, it wins in the end because I have control, because the Gloves that now adorn my feet give me the edge I need to push the limits of my ton-up steed that much farther. What an awesome feeling…

Running through traffic now, shifting up and down, changing lanes, dodging soccer mom’s headed to the tanning booths and spin classes that make their lives worth while… Brake left, brake right, accelerate…I escape the clutches of urban riding once again. It’s all a process of ease with a set of Gloves on your feet.

Surprisingly, for a boot that fits so “snug” in all the right areas it’s more than easy to pivot and my shifting actually seems to be better. More exacting in the riding process. The actuation of my foot seems more in sync with the bike more than ever before. The toe kicks of my shift and brake levers are available with a moments notice and everything just feels right.  Nirvana on the street..

The ecstasy felt when riding with a pair of Vitesse Moto boots is due to the employment of what Vitesse has dubbed “V-Cockpit technology” which is the centerpiece of the Vitesse brand and is the heart of Vitesse’s performance package. It is a patented ankle management device that provides riders the best protection-to-comfort ratio available. A soft, wrap-around inner-boot encapsulates the foot in a comfortable cradle, offering better walking comfort and impact absorption. A rigid, tri-dimensional structure helps protect from impact. The extended forefoot construction guarantees maximum torsional rigidity, keeping the foot stable in the event of an aerial crash. And a radial monobloc chassis integrates the two other layers into a fully functional system. In lamants terms, it reunifies the function of control, stability and protection into one single piece.

Combine that with other best-in-class features such as the use of an external tibial plate for superior impact protection, sticky rubber forefoot for added traction, contoured Vitesse G last for a snug, supportive fit with a flatter toe box for a performance feel, the external calf spoiler to offer added support, an internally reinforced toe box to limit pressure points from shifting and an external, asymmetrical shift pad to limit abrasion and you’ve got the makings for what very well may be the most comfortable and high performance boot available. And did we mention, it looks great with cuff’d jeans, a rocker jacket and a pudding bowl? Digg it.

Having tested the Glove boot while racing at the Bonneville Salt Flats, around town here in St. Petersburg, FL and most recently on some hair-raising rides through the Alabama hills during the Barber Vintage Festival I can attest to the quality, comfort and style that the Glove line so perfectly balances giving the rider the opportunity to do just that, ride.

But that’s not the only measure of a proper test for a riding boot, is it? What about the hours you spend once you get to your destination on your feet. Walking and talking with friends about bikes, kneeling over to do repairs or digging for treasure at a swap meet. You have to be comfortable and just like the previously aforementioned hightened sense of experience the Glove’s offer a rider while doing what they love most, riding. They even offer respite during the down times when your two wheeled terror is parked, waiting patiently for your return and a wrap on the throttle.

The level of comfort the Glove’s afford when simply walking or standing is a bit perplexing as you wouldn’t expect to feel that comfortable in a riding boot that offers this much protection. You feel the sturdy heal under your foot and the crispness in your step however, do to the V-Cockpit technology, your motion is not inhibited nor your stride affected which helps tremendously with fatigue. Granted, they’re not as comfortable as wearing a pair of chucks that are broken in, but after spending a solid week wearing them around the shop, at the grocery store and just about everywhere else as an additional test I can tell you that they’re simply put “pretty damn comfortable” for the protection they offer.

DCC’s final opinion on the Glove boots from Vitesse Moto? That for the money, you can’t buy a better quality boot that offers more protection while not compromising style or aesthetic, but most importantly comfort. Head on over to Vitesse Moto’s website today by [CLICKING HERE] and snag a pair for yourself, you won’t be disappointed.

For the full review photo album [CLICK HERE].

No Comments » | Posted in Products |

Chasing Speed…Bonneville for the next generation

Tuesday, October 18, 2011 8:00:06 AM America/New_York

There’s a lot that goes through your mind when you’re preparing for a trip to the Bonneville Salt Flats. What will the climate be like? Will the bike hold-up under such extreme pressures? Will I remember to tighten every bolt and bring all my essential gear?

Regardless though of the myriad of questions that rattle around your brain like pinballs bouncing to and froe inside a glass machine from the 70’s, I have to believe that the one question that rings true to any racer is this:

Do I have what it takes?

This question plagued me the days and nights prior to heading to Bonneville where I would meet up with my good friend Brandon Schrichten to put our marks on the barren wasteland that’s been host to the greatest men in the motorsports industry. The Great Bonneville Salt Flats.

The plan was simple; I’d fly into Salt Lake City, UT with my girlfriend April. Upon arrival we’d pickup a rental car while Brandon and his better half, Leilanni, would drive down from Colorado in their Ford Ranger pickup. In the back of the truck, ready and waiting, Brandon’s 2009 Triumph Thruxton, along with all our gear to create our make shift Dime City while we were guests on the salt.

Leading up to Bub’s Speed Week I spent time researching and communicating with Brandon via the Internet sending photos and details on which nuts and bolts needed safety wired, tire pressure and things the like that needed to be in order to pass scrutinizing. He put his able hands to work on his already highly customized Thruxton and made sure everything was up to spec as per the safety standards sanctioned by the event noted in the rulebook.

We rendezvoused at our fantastic hotel in Wendover, the Rainbow, which although it seemed was stuck in the 80’s, it had it’s own sweet little charm.  After some rest and a nice miners breakfast we made our way over the border into Utah to face the vast expanse of salt, wind and sun.

After picking a spot across from the Brough Superior Team adjacent to Big Sid we started to setup our make shift campsite.  Pop-up tent, chairs, banner, cooler loaded down with Water, Rootbeer and SourPatch Kids, check! In the spirit of keeping things light and right we had a small toolbox with bare essentials, which was complimented, by our chests full of determination. Our hopes, that shear tenacity and grit would get us through anything that might take us by surprise.

We dropped the tailgate and rolled the Hinckley Thruxton down for it’s first taste of the salt. Sitting so perfectly under the tent she looked absolutely at home. There’s just something about the contrast of machinery against the salt bed. The crisp white particulate reflects the beauty of each paint fleck and weld yielding an image that is both inspiring and celestial.

Once camp was setup we headed out to explore the area and take notice of all the other machines, men (and women) who brought them to the ends of the Earth with the same goal in mind. To make their marks on the salt and share in a long lived tradition to chase the ghost of speed at any and all costs.

Twin-engined Indian’s, Vincent’s and Triumph’s were spotted as often as SUV’s in the local Wal-Mart parking lot. Obscure sidecar rigs from as far as Denmark and Sweden were present. The re-released and newly constructed Brough Superior’s were also present as were handfuls of every other flavor you can imagine. Harley Big Twin Custom’s, Turbo Busa’s and even a fearless 12 year old on an XR100. How awesome it was!

Once we made our rounds it was time to head to both tech inspection and registration. The lines were longer than Rolling Stones concert line and the processes at both we’re less than streamlined. Combine that with the 100+ degree heat beating down on you and it’s a wonder some of the guys we saw didn’t pass out from exhaustion.

Fortunately for Brandon and I, we had our lady friends April and Leilanni there to help hold umbrellas and get us Snow cones. Smart!

Standing patiently, watching and listening to others as they went through tech inspection was quite invaluable to our efforts. Even though we were in the “Run What Ya Brung” class and our requirements were far less than those of the FIM Record chasers to see and learn what could and couldn’t make it through tech would prove to be highly beneficial to us in our future endeavors to up the ante should we choose.

Fast-forward 3 hours, this was it, our chance to prove we came prepared. Brandon and I both stood silently as the tech team inspected our bike with the utmost precision. Employing an inspection mirror they checked for safety wire on the oil drain plug nut, looked at each of our axle bolts for quality safety wire installations, checked our REV’IT leathers, gloves and back protector along with Vitesse Moto boots and Bell and Icon helmets. Check, check check… The only change that needed to be made was moving of the number plate from the front to the sides. No too bad for a couple of rookies the guys commented. Nice!

With smiles on our faces and patting of one another’s backs we headed out of tech and back to the Dime City Salt Shelter to hydrate and make the required changes to the number plates.

As the day moved on we played host to tons of visitors who were curious as to what “machine” we’d brought to the salt. Interestingly enough, we had the only modern Triumph on the entire race list. After talking with veterans for hours on end it seemed as though Brandon and I had received the thumbs up from the majority of them, which I’ll be honest, felt pretty damn good.

One gentleman noted “It’s cool to see the young guys out here with the modern classics doing what we did with them back in the day. It’s kind of a revival I think and it’s great that there’s still youth interested in running their motorcycles down the salt as fast as they can filled with reckless abandon!”

And another duly noted that “If there is gonna be a future for this kind of sport more younger guys need to get involved and the manufacturers should support them. This kind of stuff, the eccentric, wild on the edge fringe of motorcycling is where champions are born and brands are proven.”

Wow. No pressure for us at all as Brandon and I peered to the salt with squinted eyes.

As the sun set on day one we re-packed our camp gear into the Ranger and headed out of the salt. Brandon was right on our six getting a taste of what the track would be like on tomorrows runs. You could see right through his Bell face shield that he was grinning from ear to ear.

After another tasteful evening in Rainbow Casino filled with conversation with Mark Wilsmore (Ace Café London) about the art of speed and pushing it to the right spot on the salt and good family fun with my folks and Aunt and Uncle that headed over to watch, we retired to our rooms. Dreams of salt and speed filled our heads.

Brandon and I both awoke well before our alarm clocks the next morning, the anticipation was just too much. Even a fuzzy Bourbon tainted headache for me and a late night of Family Guy for Brandon (He doesn’t have cable at home.) couldn’t keep us down. We were awake, alive and ready to take our chances.

The sun was barely up and the rider lines were already long, the heat was already barreling down on the surface and you could see the tension in their eyes as you passed by the intake road.

I was first out, like a gladiator heading into the arena I slipped my REV’IT CR race suit over my socks and pulled it up waste high.  Back protector comes next and then the suit up over my shoulders. Sitting down now, already feeling the heat, I zip up my ankles and slide my Vitesse Moto “Glove” boots over the suit. My feet almost “pop” as they slide into place, I feel safe in this space.

Standing up, I adjust the suit and slide my chest protector in place zipping up the front that holds everything in place. I’m ready…. I make my way to the bike and slide my Bell helmet carefully over my ears and down around my cheeks, snap in the wind deflector and pop the lid. One by one I pull my gauntlet gloves on making a fist to settle my fingers in to where they feel at home.

I throw one leg over the Thruxton and hit the ignition, the fuel pump primes and then with the flick of a button she roars to life. Heads turn as the unique exhaust note echo’s off the salt and I make my way down to the staging line. I’m on my way.

Or so I thought…

So the processes of Speed Week could use a little refinement.  After the first hour of waiting in the blistering sun I thought, surely there is a better way to manage getting people to the salt. Assigning and calling blocks of numbers even, anything was better than this.

Two hours passes and although I can feel the heat, I can’t imagine what it would be like to be wearing some of the older style suits I see guys in. Solid leather with no vents, stiff construction rigid almost. Not my REV’IT CR suit, it has protection in all the right spots and vents strategically placed to help with airflow even when you’re standing still.

Finally, we get the green light and a group of us head down to the second staging area. Again, we wait, but not as long this time.  They begin calling numbers within 45 minutes, I’m third in line.  Here it is. I can taste it.

I stage to the front of the line, give April a kiss goodbye and hand her my life insurance policy with a grin and make my way to the starting line.  I arrive confident and relaxed until I stall the bike trying to find neutral. The guy holding the flag chuckles and says, “Don’t worry, it happens all the time.”

I try to hold my composure.

It’s at this point that it finally hits me.  I’m here, on the salt at Bonneville about to embark upon one of the most important rides of my life.  How many other men have sat in this same spot I thought to myself?  What was going through their minds as their engines idled and they awaiting the figure eight wave of that green flag of redemption?

And then, without any warning my mind went completely blank with the exception of one thought.

“You’ll be fine.  Don’t worry.  You DO have what it takes.  You made it this far, nothing can stop you now.”

As if time almost stopped, it resounded in my mind for what seemed to be hours and then with a flash, I snapped back to reality and saw the flag being waved. I took off slowly and cautiously.

Mile one, passed.  Getting up to speed now, you can feel the salt as it moves beneath you.  Up to 4th gear.

Mile two, passed.  Roll on the throttle and click into 5th before mile 3 comes up.

Mile three, passed.  This is it, the timing happens now between mile 3 and 4, wide open. Make it count!

Like the sands of time, I can feel the salt shifting and the bike drifting beneath me, oddly though, I’m not concerned.  I keep pushing and tuck further and further into the bike, I become a part of it.  My arms are locked; elbows tucked and chin on the tank. Nothing can stop me, I’m one with the salt.

I pass mile marker four and slowly roll off the throttle for a controlled descent from the high I’ve just been on and make my way off the track and back to the pits.

101.2MPH! By no means a record, but to me it was all I needed. To crack the ton with the taste of salt on my lips and white expanse beneath me, what a feeling!

After several pats on the back and bro hugs back at camp DCC Brandon and I switched gear and he made his way out through the same journey as I enduring the heat and pressure Bonneville puts atop a man.

His run, a whopping 113.9 MPH!

And before anyone says anything, he ways 30lbs less than me and rides the bike everyday.  A higher time was expected!  Seriously though, even at that Brandon commented on how he had the bike totally pinned and it simply didn’t have any more juice.  It’s amazing really, the affects the salt and atmosphere has on a machine at speed.

No worry though, we’ve tasted the forbidden fruit and before our trip was over we already began plotting and planning for next year.  The changes we’d make, the other bikes we would bring, and the good times we’d share again. It made it all worth it, the challenge that is and the need to come back and try it all again.

If I had to say any one thing was best about Bonneville it would be just that.  The challenge.  Anyone can go fast on the street with the flick of a wrist, but to go through the preparation, travel the distance and pin it when your mind tells you should roll off is a whole other league.

For those of you even thinking about doing it, do it.  Your life won’t be the same afterwards.

For a glance at the full photo album from the trip [CLICK HERE] and checkout the video below for a little sample of what transpired on the salt.

No Comments » | Posted in DCC News! |

Moving Westward.. A Bonneville Speedweek short-film.

Friday, September 30, 2011 8:34:29 AM America/New_York

This September part of the Dime City Cycles crew made the long journey to Bonneville Utah to experience Bub’s Speed Week.  Here’s a short film by Brandon Schrichten depicting the free unbridled spirit the salt inspires. Stay tuned, we’ve got a full report to post up with with a ton of great photos we know you’ll enjoy!

A special thanks goes out to REV’IT, Bell Helmets and Vitesse Moto. In the film you’ll get a glimpse REV’IT’s CR race suit and gauntlet gloves; Bell’s Custom 500 3/4 DOT approved helmet and their Star Race helmet; along with Vitesse Moto’s “Glove” race boots. These are three fine vendors who understand the need for function while at the same time, the importance of blending it with timeless styling. We’ll be doing full detailed reviews on these products in the months to come, so stay plugged into the DCC Diatribe for access to those.

Ride Fast. Live Well. – The Crew @ Dime City Cycles

No Comments » | Posted in DCC News! |

Bell + REV’IT + Vitesse Moto & Triumph / Jason @ Bonneville = A Great Time!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011 9:52:39 AM America/New_York

We’ve kept it under wraps up until now, but seeing as how we’re going to be heading out on a jet-plane this Friday, we figured we can’t keep it a secret any longer! Myself am headed to Bonneville to pilot a custom Triumph Thruxton built by Brandon Schricten out of Colorado. It’s modified to the hilt in full Cafe Racer style with a custom metal tank and seat section, bars, exhaust, intake and a myriad of other items all fashioned by Brandon’s hands in his garage in the great state of Colorado. You may have seen some of Brandon’s fun-loving high-quality video and still work via the Its Better In The Wind Project as he is a major contributor.

Here’s a sample of two of his more recent pieces:

And here’s a shot of the Thruxton he and I will be chasing the salt on [photo by Scott G. Toepfer] from our El Mirage trip earlier this year:

Along with Brandon (and he and I’s girlfriends, Leilanni and April) I’ll be heading out to Bonneville (in spirit) with the great folks from Bell Helmets, REV’IT! Motorcycle Gear and Vitesse Moto in an effort to put some of fine their products through their paces on the salt.

A Bell Star helmet, A REV’IT CR vintage style race suit, gloves and back protector and a set of Vitesse Moto “Glove” boots will be at my beck and call for use and abuse. How great is that? Bonneville is the ultimate proving ground for man and machine and you can rest assured, as a result of that simpel fact, that we’ll have quality and detail rich reviews of all these products upon our return!

Here’s a teaser shot of the Bell Star helmet which was custom painted by Liza to bring that “old-school” feel to something modern:  (More high quality images of the REV’IT! CR suit and Vitesse Moto boots are on their way, folks. We don’t want to spoil you in our first post about the trip!)

In addition, I’d like to thank Triumph Motorcycles. Without them and their belief that motorcycles should be as they were; as simple as possible, just fast enough and classically beautiful- riding, simply wouldn’t be as fun. Keep up the great work guys, you’re more appreciated than you know!

Be sure to follow our Facebook feed from the 26th to the 29th for quality images from the basin….talk to you from the Salt, Ace!

No Comments » | Posted in DCC News! |

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