Specialized S-Works Vent shoes review

The S-Works Vent shoe is positioned between the venerable S-Works 7 and lightweight Exos, but how does it fare alongside its venerable family members?

S-Works Vent road shoes
(Image: © Josh Croxton)

Cyclingnews Verdict

An immediately comfortable, lightweight and breathable race shoe that meets its brief with absolute excellence, just don't get them in white


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    Immediately comfortable

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    Highly breathable

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    Lightweight at 281g (EU46)

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    Boa S3 dials are still the best around


  • -

    Tongue 'falls' outwards

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    Premium price

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According to Specialized, 41 riders took to the start of the 2021 Tour de France in Specialized shoes. One of the brand's four offerings that fit the bill for pro road cyclists is the S-Works Vent, and if you look at the feet of the pro peloton for more than a few minutes, there's a good chance you'll spot some, such are their popularity. 

The S-Works Vent shoe was designed as a highly breathable, fair-weather shoe, for summer weather. I first came into contact with them back in 2019 when, by chance, I stayed at the same hotel as Bora-Hansgrohe's training camp in Majorca. The scorching weather during that week was exactly what the S-Works Vent was designed for. However, little did we - or Specialized - know what was to come, and the shoes eventually launched in June 2020, ironically during the midst of the COVID pandemic when many people around the world were forced to remain indoors. 

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Josh Croxton
Associate Editor (Tech)

Josh is Associate Editor of Cyclingnews – leading our content on the best bikes, kit and the latest breaking tech stories from the pro peloton. He has been with us since the summer of 2019 and throughout that time he's covered everything from buyer's guides and deals to the latest tech news and reviews. 

On the bike, Josh has been riding and racing for over 15 years. He started out racing cross country in his teens back when 26-inch wheels and triple chainsets were still mainstream, but he found favour in road racing in his early 20s, racing at a local and national level for Somerset-based Team Tor 2000. These days he rides indoors for convenience and fitness, and outdoors for fun on road, gravel, 'cross and cross-country bikes, the latter usually with his two dogs in tow.