Nike Tiempo Flight Review
The Tiempo Flight is the first takedown model to the Tiempo Legend IV, and draws quite a few similarities to the top end model. What is great about the fit and feel of the Legend IV is also there with the Flight. Even though the price of the shoe is not that of a top end product, the fit and feel certainly is. Honestly, if you put the Legend IV on one foot and a Flight on the other, it is pretty difficult to pick a favorite in terms of comfort and quality of fit. Like the Legend IV, the fit of the Flight is very dependent on the stretching and breaking-in of the boot. From brand new, the toe box and forefoot tend to be on the smaller side and will feel a little tighter than you might like. Give the shoe about an hour or two to break-in, and the calf skin leather upper will stretch and form very nicely to your foot. It is also worth noting that although there is a break-in period, you should really have any issues with discomfort, other than the shoes feeling a little tight at first. It is also important to buy these shoes with a tight fit from right out of the box, otherwise the shoes will over-stretch and you will be left with a sloppy fit after break-in. Once broken-in, the Flights feel fantastic. There is nothing like the feeling of a soft leather soccer shoe that wraps your foot perfectly, reminding us why leather is still considered as one of the best materials for the upper of a soccer shoe. The premium fit coupled with a foam insert on the tongue, and a suede heel liner, makes for a very comfortable shoe. Also like the Legend IV, only the toe and forefoot area are natural leather, where from the mid-foot back, the shoe is made from a synthetic leather. The synthetic leather is not Kanga-Lite like the Legend IV is, but it does the job of keeping a similar feel in comparison to the leather section, as well as allowing for the shoe to keep its shape more efficiently. The shoe fits at about an average to slightly wider foot, but if you do have an exceptionally wide foot, the Flight may be just a little too slim for you. Sizing is very important with this particular shoe, and just like the Legend IV, the Flight fits true to size. I wore my usual size 9US for review, and while they felt a little on the tight side from out of the box, you will soon realize that you went with the right size once the shoe has stretched. The Flight is a very comfortable, and very high quality shoe and does not suffer from a poor fit like many takedown models do.
The Tiempo Flight weighs in at 9.2oz, which is nearly identical to the Legend IV. This is on the lighter side of classically styled soccer shoes and is just above what you could begin to call lightweight. If compared to say a high-end running shoe, the 9oz mark is considered to be very lightweight. So many people are consumed with this need for ultra-lightweight soccer shoes, and while that’s fine, I feel like a lot of people miss out on trying something simple, like the Flight, because they are such great shoes. Anyways, for what they are, the Flights are fairly lightweight, and will certainly not weigh you down.
The stud pattern of the Flight is very similar to that of the Legend IV, just without all of the extra bells and whistles, which can honestly be argued to have no effect. What you get is a simple, no nonsense stud pattern that is one of my personal favorites. The forefoot is made up of four conical studs spread across the inside and outside of the foot, with two small bladed studs through the middle. Under the heel, you get four bladed studs, two on each side. The stud pattern translates to a very natural feel, and is one of the more commonly used stud patterns amongst the professionals. The conical studs allow for a solid blend of grip and maneuverability in the grass. We see so many bladed stud pattern being released, which provide tons of grip when pushing off, but don’t allow for that freedom to pivot like a conical stud pattern can provide. The bladed heel studs offer a very solid and very stable feel when planting your foot to strike the ball. It’s a great, classic stud pattern that anybody can appreciate.
When you’re talking about classic soccer shoes, the leather upper is always the main focal point of the boot, where many assume the quality of just by the type of leather being used, with kangaroo leather considered as the best of the best. While the Legend IV uses a kangaroo leather upper, which is phenomenal quality, the Flight uses what most would consider to be a lesser material, using a calf skin leather upper. Trust me when I say that the leather used on the Flight is not that of a poor quality leather, and definitely can be considered as an ultra-premium material. The leather is arguably just as soft as that of the Legend IV, with the main, very subtle difference being the feel. The touch on the ball in the Flight is honestly fantastic, and I would even say that I prefer it ever so slightly to that of the Legend IV. The leather is on the thinner side but still has a very natural padding to it. Since the leather is soft, you get a very close to the foot feel on the ball, which I really liked. The touch is definitely softer on the Legend IV, where as the Flight features a thinner, slightly closer to the foot feel. The mid-foot of the Flight is a synthetic leather material, but is finished in such a way that it mirrors almost exactly the natural leather featured on the upper. What is very important for me when synthetic and natural materials are used together on the same boot is that they blend together. This means that the touch and feel on the ball is uniform across the entire upper of the boot, and the Flight achieves this beautifully. The synthetic blends very nicely, to the point where I would deem it “unnoticeable”, which is good. If you want that quality leather touch without the big price tag, the Flight will certainly deliver.
Striking the ball in the Flights is much like any other full leather soccer shoe. The leather upper provides that natural padding when striking the ball, which feels great. The solid fit of the shoe, gives the shoe a very precise feel. I don’t know what it is about soft leather soccer shoes, but there is just this added sense of control that I feel when striking the ball. Maybe that’s just me, but I personally prefer to have a little bit of padding between my foot and the ball when taking a shot.
Leather shoes in general tend to provide a pretty solid amount of protection. Natural leather has just a little bit of padding to it, offering not only a great touch on the ball, but also a little bit of protection should you take a blow to the foot. There honestly is not much on the shoe that adds any protection other than what the leather will provide, but even so, you are not walking out completely exposed with a pair of Flights on your feet.
The quality of materials, coupled with the low price tag, make this a very attractive shoe for pretty much anybody. Whether is be that you are on a budget, are looking for a second pair of shoes or just want a high quality shoe for a reasonable price, the Flight is going to do the job. Keep in mind that the shoe is not designed or intended to be used on any type of artificial surfaces, and use on these types of surfaces will have a major impact on the durability of the shoes. Should you wear these only on natural grass surfaces, you should have no issues with getting at least a seasons worth of play out of the Flights. Also keep in mind that the Flight uses a natural leather upper, so some maintenance is required to keep your shoes in optimal condition.
I honestly did not expect much from the Flight, but once I laced them up for the first time, I was pleasantly surprised. The leather is super soft, the fit is that of a high-end leather shoe and the stud pattern is one of my favorites. Like I said, if you are on a budget, need a second pair of shoes to add to your rotation, are looking for a reasonably priced yet high quality pair of shoes or are even looking to try something more along the lines of a traditional soccer shoe without spending too much money, the Flights are a shoe that you should seriously consider. Truly a shoe I can recommend to pretty much anybody.
Comfort/Fit 9 out of 10
Weight 8 out of 10
Traction 9 out of 10
Touch 10 out of 10
Shooting 8 out of 10
Protection 8 out of 10
Durability 8 out of 10
Final Score 60 out of 70 or 86%