Alpinestars SMX Plus Boots - 2011
- For superior safety and freedom of movement, Alpinestars’ SMX Plus features an innovative Multi Link Control system and high modulus TPU protection integrated into the sleek profile of the boot
- Inner Kevlar® speed lacing closure and micro-adjustable ratchet fastener combine to ensure a comfortable, conforming fit on both the road and track
- Forefoot laminated with shock absorbing open cell foam while the ankle area has a highly breathable lining for improved comfort
- Alpinestars unique Multi Link Control System provides advanced support for the ankle, limiting hyper-torsion, hyper-extension and hyper-flexion as well as providing additional impact protection to the ankle and Achilles
- Wide, ventilated, heel counter extends to the ankle and is combined with a shock absorbing padded insert and self-molding foam ankle protectors
- Replaceable heel slider and external side heel slider are positioned to dissipate shock and promote sliding during an accident
- Newly designed, replaceable TPU toe slider with snap-in assembly provides more coverage around the toe area
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The overall fit/size of this new style seems “true” to their published size chart (see below), so if you are comfortable with a certain size from previous Alpinestars boots, then choose the same size. I’d consider the width of the men’s sizes to be normal to slightly wide (D or E). These boots have an internal lacing system that helps you get the right fit through the foot and instep which is a welcome feature on a zip-close boot with no other form of adjustment.
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Our Two Cents
The 2011 SMX Plus boot from Alpinestars is the race boot in their line that covers the widest range of application. The boots of course have full-on racing features, but are comfortable and functional so they could be used for sport/street riding as well. The internal lacing closure is a welcome adjustment feature that helps you get the the right amount of snugness. The laces are built with plastic speed laces which allows you to give them a simple tug and the entire set of laces snugs up uniformly. And then of course there is the external zippered closure which hides everything. At the top of the calf there is a metal/plastic ratcheting closure to adjust the tightness of the top of the boot. This feature will adjust for varying calf thicknesses and whether or not you are wearing the boots over tucked-in sport pants. There is a substantial amount of protection on either side of the ankle and heel and also in the shin area. The “Multi Link” control is a series of external plastic pieces that slide and pivot to allow movement in some directions (for shifting, walking, etc), but restrict movement in unfavorable directions (those that cause injury). Most race boots today have similar systems. This one seems substantial around the ankle bones, but not so much up the back of the lower calf where the plastic is pretty thin and flexible. I guess all these systems try to balance the safety vs. functionality equation, so I certainly won’t pretend that I’d know how to do it any better. I really like the rounded shape of the heel assembly. The idea of a design like this is to promote a sliding motion during a fall. Boots that have a more traditional heel shape are more likely to hang up on something (on the ground) while sliding along and wrench the ankle. Makes perfect sense to me. Please take a look at our close-up pictures by clicking the “View Larger Images” link above.
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