RST Tractech Evo III boots review: an ideal halfway house?

RST TracTech Evo III boots

Sitting somewhere between a road and a track boot, this pair from RST represents a good compromise and are decent value ​

Sturdy-feeling, well made, good value
Squeaky when walking, toe slider bolts can work loose 

Key features

- Hinged ankle 

- Zip closure with hook and loop flap

- Replaceable toe sliders

- Perforated for airflow

Studies have shown that foot and lower leg injuries are the most common that bikers can suffer. So, even if you don’t consider yourself much of a sporty rider, or you’re unlikely to ever venture on track, it’s still worth getting a pair of boots that might look - on the face of it - like overkill. Much like these RST Tractech Evo IIIs/3s. 

They’re placed somewhere between more road-focused boots and out-and-out track day products, but are they still a bit much if you’re mostly going to be using them on public highways? After several thousand miles of road riding testing these boots, we have our answer - and that’s ‘no’.

There’s your short answer, but if you want a longer one, a lot of it has to do with comfort. The Tractechs are easy to slide on and off, and once on, there’s a nicely padded interior that ensures no sore bits on your feet or lower legs even after a lengthy ride. A large velcro tab gives a decent amount of adjustability, ensuring a snug fit, and on that front, the sizing was as expected. Ventilation is good, meanwhile, reducing sweat - and therefore smell - on warmer days. 

Despite this, they’re sturdy-feeling boots, with a tough-feeling toe area, along with a thick armoured section for the shin, armour for the ankle, and a hinged section to prevent ankle overextension, which is what causes sprains. The boots are quite chunky, but I'm just about able to fit the legs of my Bull-It jeans over the tops. 

Once at your destination, walking short to medium distances in the boots is fine - as you’d probably expect, they’re not as flexible as something like a touring boot or a more casual product, but you can stroll about in a relatively normal fashion. It’s a shame they’re not a bit quieter, though - there’s a pronounced squeaking from the boots with every step, which could get annoying. For you and anyone in earshot.

After extensive testing over many months and at least 3,000 miles of riding, the boots look largely as they did when first emerging from the box, save for a few scratches in the paint on the toe sliders and a few fly splats I really ought to clean up…

The stitching is all perfect, the leather is in great condition, and the liner is still feeling fresh. The only issue we have experienced is with the toe sliders, one of which worked its way loose over time on both bolts. If you buy a pair of these I’d advise whipping these little bolts out and putting some Loctite on the thread to prevent the same thing happening to you.

Should you buy RST Tractech Evo III boots?

If you’re after a boot that’ll work for both road and a bit of track work, the RST Tractech Evo IIIs will fit the bill nicely - along with this latest test, we’ve tested older versions of the boots on track and were similarly impressed. But if you’re exclusively riding on the road, they’re still worth considering, given the extra protection they bring without compromises in terms of comfort. 

You just need to keep an eye on those toe slider bolts, but if you follow the advice above that shouldn’t be a problem. If you’re also likely to be getting off the bike at your destination and covering great distances on foot without changing to ‘civvies’, these boots probably aren’t for you.

As a value proposition, they score well, coming in at a shade under £150. If you’re happy to forgo a bit of ventilation, there’s also a waterproof version that doesn’t cost much more, although the normal Tractechs still kept my feet dry during lighter spells of rain.