How to run Gummy-Bear shoes in the fastest run group—and win a free set!

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Sam Smith

How to Buy a Proper Driving Shoe, According to That Guy Who Wouldn’t Shut Up at Your Last Track Day

1. Look at your shoes. Now look at yourself. Stop. Look at your shoes again. Now think about driving. Now think about not driving. Look back to your shoes.

2. What I just did to you is a mind-management trick I learned in the MBA program at Wharton. Made you want to pay attention, didn’t it? I was watching you in Turn 4. You missed the apex by two inches. I’m not an expert, but your shoes are wrong. Don’t you want to go faster? You could go faster with better shoes. Did you know that? I bet you didn’t. I did 15 track days last week.

2022 Puma Suede Triplex Haribo standing on tire
Sam Smith

3. You club race? That’s cool. My 911s are paint to sample. Have you ever ordered something painted to sample? Not just anyone can do it. I ordered my favorite Porsche in a gray two Pantone shades off from Chalk. That’s a Porsche color, but my Chalk is pretty far from the Chalk I saw on Rennlist, where most people learn about color. Do you know what Pantone is? They only made 465 other 911s in Zuffenhausen this exact shade in the third week of May. That’s rare. Rare as good Wagyu. I’m very private. I ordered the factory cockpit fire extinguisher.

4. See, some people wear sneakers to drive. You need driving shoes. Why are you wearing Haribo clompers? Pumas? Gummy bears? Grow up. The sole is too wide. Not enough rounding at the heel. For heel-and-toeing. I do it a lot in my car. My 911s are automatics, but they’re PDK. It’s different. You still have to heel-and-toe.

5. I don’t know why you think heel-and-toeing can’t be done on an automatic. I do it all the time.

2022 Puma Suede Triplex Haribo pedal
Sam Smith

6. Don’t tell me what can’t be done with an automatic! I was just walking by and you asked me about shoes?

7. Look, you asked me for help. Now you’re denying it. I’m not going to help you if you don’t want help.

8. I almost left right there, but you’re new around here. This isn’t my first Porsche. How do you take Turn 12? You have to be flat out. Are you flat? I can go flat, but I have Hoosiers on my car. Sticker tires. They’re called that because they stick a lot.

9. Have you ever heard of Piloti shoes? I’m in the advanced group.

10. Yeah, you say that. But this is a Porsche.

11. Seriously, those gummy-bear sneakers are ridiculous. Not gonna get you laid, am I right?

2022 Puma Suede Triplex Haribo rear detail
Sam Smith

12. Yo, don’t call her that. She’s not my wife.

13. Honey, just go back and wait in the RV. I don’t care if you like his shoes.

14. Why you have to make that face? I was just complimenting your driving, alright?

15. So what you get with a set of Pilotis, is what they call the Apex Arch. It’s this ramp—are you listening?—this ramp inside, to hold your foot and keep it stable while cross-laterally axillating from brake pedal to gas. Trimmed in leather.

2022 Puma Suede Triplex Haribo through wheel
Sam Smith

16. Steve McQueen invented it. Everyone cross-laterally axillates these days. It’s how you make a 911 turn, you know?

17. No, it’s pronounced “McKeen.”

18. Look, it’s your fault you don’t know how to say guy’s name, not mine.

19. I met a podiatrist once. He had a 928.

20. Those are the carbon brakes.

21. So the laces are Chalk, see. Look at mine. Did you know that Piloti means “pilots” in English?

22. I paid extra for that.

 

***

2022 Puma Suede Triplex Haribo driving shoe
Sam Smith

HOW TO BUY A PROPER DRIVING SHOE, ACCORDING TO YOUR NARRATOR, A MAN WHO HAS NEVER BOUGHT A PROPER DRIVING SHOE

1. Buy a shoe that’s comfortably narrow and thin of sole and doesn’t get caught on the pedals.

2. Drive some cars.

3. Smith’s Rule on Self-Applied Adjectives, Article IV, Section II, Chapter 8: Don’t buy anything from anyone who claims to be the “gentleman” supplier to anything.

4. Salut mi famiglia.

5. Fin.

***

2022 Puma Suede Triplex Haribo

Base price/as-tested: $60 / $60 (Size US 11 / EU 44.5)

2022 Puma Suede Triplex Haribo saying
Sam Smith

Highs: Doesn’t fall off your foot when you drive in it. Feels small and wieldy. Cool gummy-bear logo from that German company that makes the good gummy bears. It’s a Puma. The cardboard box it comes in has bears on it. You could put an unboxing video on YouTube and probably get, like, 4 million views by talking about the bears. SMASH THAT SUBSCRIBE BUTTON.

Lows: Not a purpose-built driving shoe. Like all shoes not purpose-built for driving, will cause your car to immediately fly into a ditch if you so much as think about using it to drive anywhere. Should probably not be worn by anyone, for any reason, ever.

2022 Puma Suede Triplex Haribo on tire
Sam Smith

Summary: Chase Jarvis once said that the best camera is the one you have with you. I drove an extremely fast car in these shoes, once, as a test. Buy what you like, but don’t smoke what the ad guys are selling. I like driving shoes that resemble regular sneakers, with a thin sole and narrow uppers. Don’t be a dick when you meet folks at a car event, and don’t lecture people. Don’t believe the hype. Don’t forget to floss. The end.

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Special bonus offer: These shoes have been worn once. Once! At Barber Motorsports Park, by a guy with thick socks and clean feet. They are essentially brand-new and look unused, and they have been sanitized. My boss told me to expense them and write something, because I eat Haribo bears by the pound. But I love to bring happiness to the masses, and these shoes need to live among the people.

So! Take a size 11 and want a free pair of candy shoes? Write something witty in the comments. If I find your comment funny, I will send these shoes to you on my own dime, not a Hagerty-sponsored contest or sweepstakes, just some shoes in the mail.

2022 Puma Suede Triplex Haribo tongue detail
Sam Smith

If nobody writes anything witty, I’ll make Hagerty Associate Editor, Nathan Petroelje, wear them as punishment for being such a good human. Nate-Dogg is great and doesn’t deserve this sort of punishment, and I don’t even know if they’d fit his feet. How fun is that? It’s a lot of fun, that’s what!

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