November 22, 2013 - San Diego, CA
Alpinestars 2014 MX Gear
If you’re located in the Southwest like we are, dirt season is here, and Alpinestars has rolled out some awesome new off-road products to stay protected while hitting the track, trail, or dunes this winter. They recently drove down all the way from Los Angeles with a van full of new gear for us to try out, and we’re bringing you the scoop on some new off-road products we are really excited about. Read on to see how Alpinestars has outdone themselves once again with these new boots, neck supports, and knee braces!
Ryan Villopoto, getting down 'n' dirty in Alpinestars boots.
Alpinestars 2014 Tech 10 Boot
The top-of-the-line Alpinestars 2014 Tech 10 Boot has been 80% redesigned and updated from the previous model, but incredibly, Alpinestars is offering this awesome new boot at the same price as the outgoing version. They put a tremendous amount of effort into building their new flagship boot, and it really shows in the final product.
The new Tech 10 incorporates an innovative new buckling system that really impressed us; the new “talon” shaped latches are built from aluminum and polymer, are very solid-feeling, and are built on a rotating platform to be both self-aligning and flexible when secured. The shin-brace portion is also built in a floating style to allow flexibility while keeping the shin protected.
In response to the rising number of pro riders who ankle-shift, Alpinestars made this a boot that would cater to the needs of both ankle and toe shifters with the redesigned footbed and ankle hinges. The Tech 10 also incorporates a full leather gaiter, and like the previous version, both the inner bootie and footbed are removable.
Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot 2014
The Alpinestars 2014 Tech 7 Boot is their top-selling MX boot, and with good reason; it is a significant upgrade from their lower-end Tech 3 boot while staying reasonably priced at the $350 mark. In fact, Alpinestars strongly claims that this is the most technical boot at that price point on the market; the challenge to their engineers when creating this boot was literally to “build a $500 boot for $350.”
The new Tech 7 for 2014 is redesigned in a number of key areas that make this a far superior boot to its predecessor. Like the top-end Tech 10 Boot, it incorporates Alpinestars’ innovative new buckle system with the floating pivot to retain maximum flexibility when secured.
They also built a significant increase in rotational flex into the boot, with prevention of major leg trauma in mind; with one of the most typical off-road injuries coming from catching a toe while dragging, the flex allows twisting forces to be more isolated at the ankle rather than transmitted to the knee, preventing what would be a much more severe injury.
Alpinestars BNS Tech Carbon Neck Support 2014
Alpinestars flagship neck support is lighter, stronger, and more adjustable than ever. Made of an advanced carbon polymer compound, the Alpinestars BNS Tech Carbon 2014 Neck Support has several features we like, such as the interchangeable coupling mechanism to set it up for a precise fit, and the light compressed foam padding in all the impact areas. This new carbon version is an incredible 33% lighter than the previous model.
But the best feature in this product is undoubtedly the locking mechanism. The entire brace swivels open for easy ingress and latches shut with a single, reassuring click, and it opens up for quick removal just as easily. Alpinestars told us they designed this with racers in mind, making it easier for them to gear up in the mad rush to get out of the paddock for the next event.
Alpinestars BNS Pro Neck Support 2014
Just behind the top-of-the-line Tech Carbon is the Alpinestars BNS Pro 2014 Neck Support, which is identical in design, but constructed out of a performance fiberglass resin rather than the lighter and more costly carbon compound. The Pro model is still 20% lighter than its predecessor!
Alpinestars Fluid Tech Carbon Knee Brace
The new Fluid Tech Carbon Knee Braces from Alpinestars are some of the nicest we’ve ever seen. They put a lot of thought into the design of these braces, especially into creating an incredibly customizable fit that will accommodate nearly every type of rider.
Alpinestars accomplished this by creating an innovative spacer system, which uses spacers in multiple sizes (all included) to not only adjust the angle of articulation, accommodating both bow-legged and knock-kneed riders, but also stop the degree which the braces extend. For riders with a previous knee injury, this feature will be especially useful. The best part of the adjustability in these braces is that you don’t have to mess with the settings every time you take them off; the quick-latch feature retains all your settings, allowing them to be put securely with only two snaps.
Besides the ergonomics, Alpinestars included features to ensure comfort while in use, like channeled padding and mesh zones for ventilation, and a system that pulls the kneecap protector away from the patella as it extends, aiding in both protection and comfort when fully flexed (check out the video to see how this works.) And amazingly, this brace is 40% lighter than the previous version! The Fluid Tech Carbon Brace is sold individually, at $349.95 per unit.
Alpinestars Fluid Pro Knee Braces
The Alpinestars Fluid Pro Knee Braces set is a great value, incorporating all the design innovations from the flagship Tech Carbon, but for less than $400 for a pair. Like the BNS neck support, the only difference is in the material used in its construction, substituting a high-performance glass-fiber compound for the lighter carbon polymer used in the Fluid Tech Carbon Knee Brace. The Fluid Pro is still 25% lighter than the previous model!
Check out all the rest of this season's new Alpinestars Gear HERE!