Technical clothing manufacturer Gill has been busy in the lab… and on deck
Anyone spending time on the water will fully understand the importance of a confident grip, secure footing and comfortable support. Two new footwear developments from Gill offer all this and much more. At the very beginning of our design and development programme we went back to basics – assessing the priorities of the end user without following the crowd of ‘me-too’ boots already in the market. The subsequent designs are the end result of an extensive performance-led design process.
Design, test and test again
From early design concepts through to test prototypes we’ve consulted consumers at both amateur and professional level, refining our designs at each development stage. Of vital importance was on-the-water performance, with wearer trials taking place over a period of eight months before we could finally give approval for production. These trials were backed up by extensive testing in our own lab and independent test houses where we measured slip resistance and waterproof performance after flexing. Not satisfied with industry-standard footwear testing, we’ve worked with a leading laboratory to develop our own method of testing wet and dry slip resistance on varnished wood and textured glassfibre – equipping the lab with sections of foredeck for added realism.
Race Boot – Built to compete
The resulting Gill Race Boot is an innovative solution for those wanting the sturdy waterproof protection of a sailing boot without having to sacrifice manoeuvrability. Perfect for the fast-paced action of keel boat racing, RIB riding or powerboating, the lightweight Race Boot has a lower cut and a secure lacing system protected by a waterproof gusset.
The Race Boot also comes equipped with a stretch cord lace that allows flex and accommodates a wider fit as well as a static lace for those who like to ‘lock in’ to their footwear.
Performance breathable boots you can rely on
Our taller Performance Breathable Boot shares many key characteristics with its sportier partner. Both boots feature a lightweight, injection-moulded outsole – a two-piece construction of impact-absorbing and waterproof TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane) and a non-marking natural rubber compound for a secure connection with the deck. Sure-footed grip is guaranteed by a combination of water-expelling drainage channels and an outsole compound chosen for the optimal balance of grip and durability. This non-slip material extends over the toe for wear protection and additional grip while working on your knees.
Waterproof protection in both styles is delivered by our moulded outsole which prevents ingress while in standing water while the use of a breathable membrane protected by TecTuff leather further resists abrasion, oil and stains together with an adjacent layer of lightweight ripstop Nylon. To optimise the expulsion of moisture vapour and to enhance wearer comfort we’ve used a soft-touch lining that actively wicks perspiration and have then laminated this to an open-cell foam that offers cushioned support.
Unique to the Performance Breathable Boot, as well as a higher fit, is the addition of low-profile grab handles that take the strain out of donning your boots. The boots also feature reflective detailing. Both boots are equipped with a number of additional consumer-led features – silicon ankle impact protection, removable contoured insole and a moulded heel kick.
We invite you to read on and find out for yourself why Seahorse is the most highly-rated source in the world for anyone who is serious about their racing.
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