Entry-level boots are getting more expensive, but I’m happy to say that we are getting more for our money as they do. Ten years ago I bought $99 boots (before I worked at Dirt Rider and was a broke college kid) and they were absolutely horrible. Way too big, huge toe box, too stiff at first yet way to floppy after a few rides, very little protection, and seams popping all over.
On a positive note, I really had no idea what a quality pair of boots felt like so ignorance was bliss.
But I don’t mind going back to testing non-premium-level boots because if you are spending half a grand on a pair of footwear, they better be stellar. Yet I really wasn’t sure what I was going to get out of these White Label boots. First, they only have two buckles and one adjustable silicone strap on the top, with no Velcro. I actually like the absence of the Velcro since it lets me get the top strap even tighter (Fox Instinct boots are Velcro-free as well). The two buckles function normally and are simple to adjust. The top strap is more of a pain to adjust, but once you do, it makes putting the boot on and taking it off super fast and simple.
I wore this boot a couple of rides before, then during, then after, the 2018 250F Motocross Shootout, plus on some long trail rides. Some serious time has been put on these boots, and the number one thing that has impressed me is durability. Not one seam has a loose stitch and the sole is still in great shape. But that turns out to be a slight double-edged sword because this tough sole has very little bike grip. I’ve had my foot slide off the pegs when I hastily put them back on after a turn. I have to make sure I have proper foot placement or there is just not enough give in the sole material to hang on to just a couple of footpeg teeth.
The boot is comfortable, if a little roomy, and break-in was just about one day at the track. I would say I have pretty standard 10.5-size feet and the size 10 I tested was just a hair loose. If you have normal to wide feet, the White Label will fit awesome—not so much for narrow feet. The toe box isn’t as flat and streamlined as a Tech 10 or Sidi Crossfire 3, but the White Label boot isn’t as bulky and tall as other cheaper boots and even the top-level TCX offering. The insole is comfortably padded and the outsole is stiff to give your arch plenty of support. Bike feel is moderate—I am able to reach and use the shifter and brake pedal well enough to still feel in control but not as precisely as expensive boots.
Ankle movement is one of the worst parts of cheap boots and while it isn’t horrible in the White Labels, it isn’t their strong suit either. Plus, where they hinge takes some getting used to. The sole and lower structure of the boot is all connected and made of stiff plastic that extends pretty high up the back of the ankle, much higher than pivoting hinged boots do. That moves where this non-hinged boot actually flexes a good 3 inches above the ankle. At first I didn’t think this was going to work, but while riding, I didn’t feel encumbered or restrained by this. I would say this is a good way of getting around the “floppy ankle” problem that cheap boots have after three or four rides. Structurally, these haven’t broken down to the point where they have no support or protection. While peg grip is pretty low, bike grip is solid. The boots have a nearly seamless inner profile that is covered in textured rubber allowing me to weld to the bike nicely.
All things considered, I’m impressed with these boots. The pros are light weight, very durable, easy and fast to get in/out, and they feel like they have a solid amount of protection. The cons are they are a little boxy, the outsole has little grip, and where they hinge takes some getting used to. If you are a racer trying to save money, don’t do it in boots. But if you are a casual rider not looking to take out a loan for MX boots, give these a shot.