Manufacturer: Ariat (View all products by Ariat)
Model: Challenge II Zip Field Boot (View all Challenge II Field Boots reviews)
Category: English Chaps/Boots/Helmets
Purchase: I needed a new pair of show boots for a reasonable price that fit nicely for this year's shows and clinics that I will be doing. I went over to Dover Saddlery (which by the way, I received GREAT service) and got these boots after about an hour of trying on many different styles (I am hard to fit-long and slim leg with size 7 feet), for about $380.
Likes: I like the look of these, they have a nice contoured shape to them that makes my leg look very long. I like the zippers on these, MUCH better than the previous Ariat models on which the zippers ALWAYS break. These zippers are pretty hard-duty. The shine does come off the first time I cleaned them, but that's the same as every other boot out there. I like the tab on the side and there is much more attention to the little details on these boots than I would have expected for the price. They look more expensive than they really are.
Dislikes: I do not like the fact that with consistent conditioning the leather and riding in these boots a lot, that they still have yet to really break in and get supple. I have had them for about one and a half months now, and I still cannot get my heel all the way down and my leg from swinging (which does not happen regularly). I also do not particularly like the elastic laces that Ariat uses on these, but that is just my view on it (I prefer normal laces that do not stretch).
Quality: There is immaculate attention given to the little details such as the toe cap and tab on the side- there is a small stitched design on the tab which looks very attractive to me. I wish that the leather could be of a better leather quality, but ever since Ariat switched their manufacturing to China from Italy, the leather has not been as great.
Summary: Overall, these are well worth the price. They make great show boots- they shine up nicely and fit well. I do recommend giving yourself ample time to break them in though, they take a while.
Usefulness Rating: 2.5 out of 5.
8 reader(s) voted.
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