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Piloti Driving Shoes

5th November 2010

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Now, at the risk of coming over all Sex in the City can I raise the subject of footwear? We all know a lot of the pleasure of driving is about the feel of what the car is doing. I don’t know about you but for me the wrong shoes can result in a good drive spoiled, especially in the Seven where anything but narrow dainty things can bring on multiple pedal applications - on the gas whilst braking at the same time. Not good.

I’ve got an excellent pair of Sparco "pixie" racing boots - thin sole, good support round the ankles, reinforced area on the right side for those heel and toe moments. Great in the car but useless out of it - no heel on the bottom - so 5 minutes walking results in sore feet and backache, plus you look a bit of a prat wearing nomex in the co-op shopping for milk and loo roll. Ok you can carry another pair of shoes to change into but it’s a faff and you don’t always plan to stop for those distress purchases when you set off.

Well I’ve found a solution and despite being no fashion guru I think this range of Italian driver orientated shoes from Piloti are just brilliant. Being a bit of a tart the yellow and black Ingels Kart Boot caught my eye as they go so well with the Seven, I just had to have them darrrrrrrrling. Although they are like a good trainer to walk around in they offer nearly as much feel as the Sparcos when driving, allowing for heel and toeing and you can sense what’s happening through the brake pedal through the tyre tread moulded sole.

They are great for a quick B-road blat or a long days touring. I’ll confess, as the laces are a bit bright, I’ve had some strange looks - one old chap, who&rsd being staring from across the cafe I’d been in, came over as I was climbing into my yellow and black Seven and said "Ah, now they make sense" and added that he thought they "look splendid".

If the Ingels are just a bit too Lewis Hamilton for you can I recommend a more training shoe style – the pair of Prototipo I also bought which have become a firm favourite for everyday casual wear. The fact they are also great to drive in is a bonus. The leather is superb - soft and supple - the detailing, like a good car design, helps lift the overall look without being flash. I like to think of them as a shoe equivalent of an Alfa 159 Touring.

One thing I would say is that like Italian bhp figures in the 70’s, the sizes are a little exaggerated so I would try half a size bigger than your usual. The range is so extensive and full of Italian design flair I’m sure you’ll find a pair to go with your car or even match you sequined dress if you are going out with Sarah J and the girls.

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