Tecnica R9.8 130

Model Year
2014-15
Category
Frontside
Last Width
98
Flex Index
130
Price (MSRP)
$785.00USD

Maybe that R at the beginning of the of the model designation stands for “Rodney” cause this boot does not get the respect it deserves. Testers think it’s one of the best ever boots to percolate out of the Tecnica factory. Yet it still seems to fly under the radar. How good is it? Well, it has been one of our top three favorites in this category two years running.

The completely revised liner from last year returns with additional improvements to the tongue, and it continued to leave an impression on testers. They love the shin fit and flex feel of the R9.8. It’s fuller and better padded than previous versions which creates a well-wrapped and even feel during flexion. It easily handles all-mountain, off-piste hits. But as transmissive and powerful as this frontside-oriented boot is, the comfy liner gives it legs in a wide range of terrain.

Speaking of transmission, the no-metal boot sole of the R9.8 packs plenty of edge power punch and precisely broadcasts mere thoughts from skier to ski—but in a lighter (and many said warmer) build-out over previous Inferno versions. Testers often mentioned how this boot made the tune on their test skis feel sharper—a sure sign that lateral and torsional power is top notch.

Testers slotted this boot on the tight side of the category, noting that the heel and ankle area are especially snug—a good thing for frontside performance skiing. One tester said the boot fit like a 98mm boot should. Testers also made mention of its optimal, out-of-the-box stance. They liked the forward lean, ramp angle and lateral cuff geometry. While the boot comes with dual cuff adjusters and a Velcro-attached rear spoiler, not a single tester mentioned touching either during their test jaunts.

Gender 
Men's
Sizes (MP) 
4-11.5 (U.S.)
Hike Mode 
No
Heat Moldable Liner 
No
Construction 
Overlap
Boot width profile 
Narrow

Kudos

  • “Zero delays. Was on every turn before I even thought about it.” --
  • “Solid, dead-on stance with power and comfort. A BMW sport coupe with all the upgrades.” -- Scott Blackwell
  • “Insane edge power with great feel for the snow. Close to perfect for me” -- Kevin Gabriel
  • “Totally locked-in fit. I felt glued to my ski. Tremendous 'unity-feel' of feet to ski to snow.” -- Jeff "JC" Costales
  • “Never derails from intended line and arc. Easy to rip, always in precise balance.” -- Larry "Laurent" Smith
  • “Great agility, incredibly quick.” -- Stacy Crumpler
  • “I am a Tecnica fan again,” -- Charlie Bradley
  • “Instant power on demand with a prompt return to center. Uncompromising performance.” -- Marc Stewart
  • “If this boot isn't in every tester’s top three, something is very, very wrong. All other frontside boots, bow to your master.” -- Mason Tuor

Caveats

  • “Comfort…well, if you like wearing Vice Grips.” -- Jeff "JC" Costales
  • “Worst aspect? Getting it off—holy sh*&, I need surgery.” -- Dallas Goldsmith
  • “Medial aspect of the heel is super tight. Would need a little grind to ski it regularly.” -- Kevin Gabriel

This boot available at...

Columbia, SC
Morris Plains, NJ
Ellicottville, NY
Wethersfield, CT
Plymouth, MI
Ann Arbor, MI

Special thanks to all of our sponsors!

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