Tuesday, April 23, 2024

New Balance Fresh Foam X Hierro v8 Multi Tester Review: 4 Comparisons

Article by Jana Herzgova and Jeff Beck

New Balance Fresh Foam X Hierro v8 ($150)


Introduction

Jana: I have done only a few runs in New Balance Hierro v6 (two models back), so this review will not be a comparison to either model v6, or v7. I no longer have the v6 model for more precise comparison, but if my memory serves well, it was a great, very comfortable, and cushioned trail shoe. I also wore the Hierro v6 for casual strolls around the town. 


I liked the Hierro v6 model, so I wanted to try the new v8 model. So let's see how the new New Balance Hierro v8 did during testing.


Jeff: In the last few years the Hierro has gone from New Balance’s most cushioned trail shoe, to simply a “well-cushioned” trail shoe. It can’t hang with its massively upsized sibling Fresh Foam More Trail, but is far from a minimalist shoe. While other shoes excel on technical trails, the Hierro seems best use case on fairly tame dirt trails. I’ve missed out on the last two iterations, but reviewed the much heavier Hierro v5.


Pros: soft feel and ride - Jana, Jeff

          True to size - Jana, Jeff

          Secure and comfortable fit - Jana, Jeff

          Borderline plush upper - Jeff

          Grippy outsole - Jeff


Cons: Way too long shoelaces - Jana

           Upper support lacking for technical trails - Jeff

Monday, April 22, 2024

Rabbit Dream Chaser Review: 4 Comparisons

Article by Renee Krusemark

Rabbit Dream Chaser ($160)


Introduction

The Dream Chaser is Rabbit's first running shoe “inspired by the belief that all runners deserve the best technology.” The “best” includes sustainable fibers and foams with a patent-pending midfoot Carbon Trax technology. The shoe launched in the Boston colorway during the 2024 race weekend. Does the quality of the brand’s apparel transcend into its first running shoe? 

Testbericht: Vimazi Z20 & Z30: Schuhdesign by Pace - Genial oder daneben? 7 Vergleiche (German)

Article by Markus Zinkl & Nils Scharff

Vimazi Z20 (175 $ / 240 CHF)

Vimazi Z30 (175 $ / 240 CHF)

Einleitung


Nils: Wie der geneigte Leser weiß, ist es nicht leicht, den richtigen Laufschuh zu finden. Der Schuh muss zu Athlet:in, Laufstil und Einsatzzweck passen. Letzten Endes ist diese Suche nach dem “perfekten Match” die Grundlage für RoadTrailRun und alle anderen Medien(schaffenden) rund um das Thema Laufschuhe. 


Die Marke Vimazi hat sich dazu etwas neues ausgedacht, um es ihren Kund:innen vermeintlich zu erleichtern, den richtigen Schuh aus ihrer Produktpalette auszuwählen: Zu jedem Schuh wird neben dem grundsätzlichen Einsatzgebiet (Road vs. Trail) ein Pacespektrum angegeben. Der Gedanke ist also, dass der Schuh gut zu euch passen sollte, sofern ihr im genannten Pacebereich lauft. Das Spektrum reicht dabei von 2:50 min / km am schnellen Ende bis zu 7:45 min / km für Straßenschuhe bzw. sogar bis 9:30 min / km für Trailschuhe. Da sollte also für jede/n etwas dabei sein. 

Recensione: Diadora Frequenza (Italian)

Articolo di Ingrid Zasa

Diadora Frequenza (175€)


Introduzione


Quando ho detto ai miei amici qui in Germania che avrei scritto una recensione su una scarpa da corsa Diadora, sono rimasti sorpresi: Alcuni di loro non conoscevano nemmeno il marchio o non avrebbero mai pensato che producessero anche scarpe da corsa.
Anche io sono rimasta sorpreso, perché per me Diadora fa parte del mondo dello sport tanto quanto per loro Puma o Adidas. Ma poi mi sono resa conto che si tratta di un marchio italiano, forse no troppo conosciuto all’estero, o perlomeno qui in germania dove mi trovo al momento.
Questo ha aumentato ulteriormente la mia curiosità nel testare la scarpa. Anche se conoscevo il marchio, non avevo mai provato una scarpa da corsa Diadora. Siete pronti a scoprire cose ne penso?

Sunday, April 21, 2024

Nike ReactX Pegasus Trail 5 Multi Tester Review: 7 Comparisons

Article by Ben David and Renee Krusemark

Nike Pegasus Trail 5 


Introduction


Renee: The Pegasus Trail 4 was a surprise, offering a light, nimble ride on trails while being a favorite road shoe for many runners. Does the Pegasus Trail 5 live up to the previous version? Is the outsole safe for wet rock? While on paper, the changes seem minor, I found the Pegasus Trail 5 to be a different shoe for different purposes as compared to v4. Updates include a new ReactX foam stated to have a 43% less carbon footprint with a 13% increase in energy return. The outsole marks the debut of Nike’s ATC (All Terrain Compound), a high abrasion rubber for increased traction. 

Saucony Triumph 22 Review: Supercritical Foam Cruiser! 6 Comparisons

Article by Sam Winebaum

Saucony Triumph 22 ($160)

Introduction

The Triumph is Saucony’s high cushion, higher drop and plush neutral daily trainer. For its 22nd edition it sees big changes: 

  • New PWRRUN Pb PEBA blend supercritical midsole foam replaces TPU based PWRRUN+

  • Same 37 mm heel / 27 mm forefoot stack height on a wider at the ground platform

  • New more plush and comfort focused upper

So, a lot of changes to a popular shoe. On the surface all are well considered and seek to modernize the shoe without completely changing its character with, clearly, the change to a supercritical foam a bold and timely move.  


Let’s find out how they performed as I took them for a solid 8 mile progression run down to below 8 minute miles as well as an A/B run with a Triumph 20 on my other foot. I did not personally run the 21 which was an upper change but had the same underfoot platform. (RTR Review)

Nike ZoomX Zegama 2 Review: Vibram MegaGrip Traction! 7 Comparisons

Article by Mike Postaski

Nike ZoomX Zegama Trail 2 ($160)


Introduction

Nike Trail takes a big leap forward with the addition of Vibram Megagrip to one of their signature trail shoes. Yes, the Ultrafly was the first Nike trail shoe to feature Vibram rubber. The Utrafty being more or less a carbon plated super shoe for the trails (with an associated super shoe price), I don’t think many trail runners got to test out this major long awaited feature from Nike.  

Enter the ZoomX Zegama Trail 2. Moderately priced at $160, this is a true workhorse trail shoe. It has the goods to bring trail runners who have been disenchanted by their lackluster outsoles for some time back to Nike. 

Thursday, April 18, 2024

Salomon INDEX-03 Review

Article by Mike Postaski


Salomon INDEX.03 ($160)


Introduction

I received the INDEX.03 out of the blue recently - since I don’t test too many road shoes, I haven’t followed the iterations of the initial two versions. A quick once over (the shoe has a distinctive and striking look), and some quick internet research, and I was intrigued. 


As you may know, the running shoe market is inundated with claims about recycled materials, sustainable features, etc. Much of this is laudable, but sometimes you can get the sense that a lot of it may be just pure marketing.


Clearly, it’s up to you as the consumer - how much stock do you put into these claims? The Salomon INDEX.03 tackles sustainability from a different approach. Not only on the front-end production side, but one the back-end, end-if-life side. Salomon offers a unique process to return the shoes when you are done with them, so that they can be disassembled and recycled into other products including ski boot shells.

[Assuming the “splitting area” is for disassembly purposes]

This focus on the lifespan of a shoe and its materials is what sets the INDEX.03’s sustainability approach apart. Just knowing that your shoes won’t (with 99.9% probability) end up in a landfill clearly sets the intention. The mere fact that you scan the QR code, and Salomon sends you the shipping label, also does show that the company is putting their money where their mouth is.


I know, I know.. There are plenty of “yeah, buts…” to go around. I can even think of a few myself. But let’s just assume this process does work, and is a feasible life cycle for a running shoe.. What’s to stop that from being replicated in other models, or by other brands? I’d say that’s a positive step. YEAH BUT… the shoe does have to be a good running shoe… 

Test: Hylo Athletics Impact: La daily trainer vertueuse (French)

Article par Jérémy Marie

Hylo Impact ( €170)


Introduction

Hylo Athletics est une jeune marque anglaise (créée en 2020) qui s’est donné pour mission de proposer une gamme où l’aspect écologique, depuis la conception jusqu’au recyclage des modèles, pesait autant que l’aspect performance.


Le modèle qui nous intéresse aujourd’hui, l’Impact, parachève leurs travaux et ne lésine pas plus sur les marqueurs de performance (poids, mousse super-critique, semelle externe) que sur l’utilisation de matériaux verts. Ainsi, 40% de la chaussure (en poids) est composée de matériaux dits “bio”: utilisation de ricin dans la tige, de dérivé de maïs (tige), de caoutchouc naturel (semelle externe)...

Interview with Ryan Eiler: 3d American and 15th overall at the 2024 Boston Marathon

 

Long time RoadTrailRun contributor Ryan Eiler had a breakthrough performance at the 2024 Boston Marathon finishing 3d American and 15th overall in a time of 2:14:23. 

Interview with Ryan Eiler (20:39)

In the video  Ryan shares his run background, training philosophy to finally get to a marathon injury free and faster than ever at 38, balancing being a new dad and start up entrepreneur, training on an ancient Sears Roebuck treadmill in an unheated shed with shaky power and what it was like to line up with the elites, take off and follow his race plan which he did brilliantly.


HOKA Skyward X Review: Practical and Effective Mega Max Cushion Cruiser! 4 Comparisons

Article by Sam Winebaum

Hoka Skyward X ($225)


Introduction

Let’s get it out of the way right away. The Skyward X may be the most significant and innovative road shoe from Hoka since the Clifton 1. Hoka has been hugely successful in recent years with.. basically the same stuff year after year:  compression molded EVA midsoles, big cushion, friendly fits and especially market momentum as runners and walkers have gravitated to the OG max cushion brand. 


In performance running, they have lagged the competition being late to supercritical foams and then a firm flavor as found in the Carbon X and first Rocket.  In trail, it has been a different story as the Speedgoat and Tecton X have led their respective categories.


With Skyward X Hoka goes “big”. Here they have cracked the code of how to stack well beyond World Athletics’ 40mm  height limits for racing with a giant  48 mm heel / 43mm forefoot stack of two types supercritical foams (PEBA top layer, EVA bottom layer) and what I see as a far more sophisticated multi dimensional carbon plating than others which provides both propulsion and stability. 

All of this on a wide platform of  95 mm heel / 80 mm midfoot / 120 mm forefoot and at a “reasonable” weight for such a massive shoe of 10.7 oz / 303 g US9.


The upper is an engineered mesh with especially noted a stout heel counter construction. 

While this upper may contribute to the weight of the shoe it clearly keeps the foot locked down to the giant platform. 


It clearly competes with others in this emerging category of stratospheric stack heights with shoes such as the yet higher stacked Prime X from adidas, the SC Trainer from New Balance and the unplated considerably lighter ASICS Superblast 


At these stack heights, and to a certain extent weight, we are not looking at a “racing” shoe for the fast and light runner or an uptempo daily trainer. Are we looking at the most deeply cushioned and especially practical super max cushioned road trainer yet? How does this behemoth ride and feel? How does it compare to others to its competitors?  Let’s get into it in my initial review after two solid runs. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Inov-8 Trailfly Speed Review: 6 Comparisons

Article by Dom Layfield

Inov-8 Trailfly Speed ($160)


Introduction


Dom: In January 2024, Inov-8 took the bold step of updating the lasts on which their shoes are built, changing from a traditional ‘shoe-shaped’ last to a more modern ‘foot-shaped’ last that better reflects actual foot anatomy.  


Other prominent brands, like Altra and Topo Athletic, have always focused on a more anatomical, rather than aesthetic, shape to their shoes.  However, Inov-8 is the first brand that I’m aware of (certainly the first of any significant size) that have made such a transition long after they have established their place in the market.   This is an incredibly bold and risky strategy, as the brand risks alienating loyal customers who are upset that their favorite shoes have changed shape.


Dom: The first shoe to be released under this new strategy is the Trailfly Speed.  The shoe is available in both wide and regular variants, although both follow the new anatomical last.  This shoe follows in the footsteps of Inov8’s highly successful zero drop Trailfly G 270, which was hugely popular with RTR reviewers (RTR Review).   Before we get into the specifics of this particular shoe, the first question is ‘what is the new shape like?’

Unpause Halley Light Review: A Great Value in a High Performance Carbon Racer! 6 Comparisons

Article by Derek Li

Unpause Halley Light (THB4690, US$130)

Introduction

Unpause is a popular brand out of Thailand that has a very small line of product offerings. Currently, they have just two models: the Atlas and the Halley Light. When I first reviewed the Unpause Atlas back in 2022, it drew a lot of interest, because it was offering a PEBA foam trainer for a very affordable price. They subsequently let on that they were working on a racer and while there were some delays with the release, it seems like it has finally hit the market, in the form of the Unpause Halley Light.

The Halley Light continues to use a PEBA based foam and this time, they have gone with a full length spoon-shaped carbon plate. Another big change is the move from the pelletized PEBA foam of the Atlas to a more conventional continuous slab of foam.

Let’s start with the numbers.

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Message Henning Mule & Mullen Slide Review

Article by Michael Ellenberger

Henning Mule ($175), Mullen Slide ($165)


Introduction

It goes without saying that, on a site dedicated to running shoes (and gear), the majority of what we review is, well, just that. But even on those big mileage weeks, churning out long hours on the roads, trails, track treadmill, whatever… you’re still spending much more time not running than running. This is all of course a big lead-up to - recovery shoes! Shoes for the other hours of the day, when you’re not choosing between high-stack trainer and carbon-plated racer. 

I was lucky enough to receive the Henning mule (clog) and Mullen slide from new startup brand Message. Message has been making moves, pushing these as post-run and post-workout recovery shoes, and for good reason - and I’ll explain below, they’re extremely comfortable and enjoyable to wear and (as I’ll also belabor, below) since clogs are an ideal post-run option, it’s sort of a no-brainer to market these to runners. There’s a lot to like here, and while this won’t follow our traditional running shoe review format, I will give my usual spoiler that - yeah, I love these, and have been wearing them basically non-stop since I got them (indoors and out!).

Komperdell Carbon Air Frame 25 & Peakmaster Pro Snowshoes, Carbon CXP Pro Poles, Snowshoe Accessories Reviews

Article by Jeff Valliere


Carbon Air Frame 25 Snowshoes 

1lb/8.6oz / 696 grams (half pair)

Sizes M, L

$499.95



Introduction: 

I’ll go ahead and get this out of the way first off, as it is the most prominent thought in my mind.  The Carbon Air Frame 25 Snowshoes are a work of art, so much so, I was somewhat reluctant to go tromp around snowy trails on them.  The hollow core carbon frame with integrated carbon decking is so exquisitely built, smooth, seamless, elegant and light. 


They are shockingly light for a well featured, 25” competent mountain snowshoe with removable insulated toe covers and a twist lock binding system (much like a BOA dial) and aggressive crampons.

Sunday, April 14, 2024

Mount to Coast MTC-S1 Multi Tester Review

Article by John Tribbia and Derek Li

Mount to Coast MTC-S1 ($160)


Introduction

John: Fresh off the launchpad in 2024, Mount To Coast (MTC) is a brand new name in the footwear industry, specifically targeting the road ultramarathon scene. Their debut offering, the MTC-S1, sparked my curiosity for several reasons.


First, the shoe boasts a unique blend of technologies, including TunedCell, their proprietary supercritical foam promising both responsiveness and durability, and 3D Archrail, a dynamic support system designed to offer stability without sacrificing natural movement. These innovative features, unseen in other offerings, make the MTC-S1 an exciting prospect for testing.


Secondly, as a fairly high-mileage runner who spends time on the roads (and trails 🙂), I'm constantly seeking shoes that excel in comfort and stability over long distances. The MTC-S1, specifically designed for ultramarathon training and racing, aligns perfectly with my road needs, making it a prime candidate for me to dabble in a road review.

While MTC's new footwear holds promise, there are some uncertainties that accompany any new product launch. Let’s see what this shoe can do!

Friday, April 12, 2024

Testbericht: Rudy Project Astral Sonnebrille (German)

Artikel von Markus Zinkl

Rudy Project Astral (129,00 €)


Einleitung


Als jemand, der gerne Sport treibt, weiß ich, wie wichtig eine gute Sonnenbrille ist. Ich habe die Astral von Rudy Project ausprobiert. Diese Marke ist ziemlich bekannt für Sportbrillen.

Ich habe die Brille beim Laufen auf der Straße und auf Trails getestet. In diesem Bericht erzähle ich euch, wie die Brille abgeschnitten hat und ob sie ihr Geld wert ist.


Technische Details

  • Gewicht: 26g

  • Abmessungen: 

  • Gläser: RP Optics

  • Material: Rilsan Rahmen

  • Kompatibel mit Korrektionsgläsern (Optical Insert)

Testbericht: Dynafit Alpine DNA 2 (German)

Artikel von Markus Zinkl

Dynafit - Alpine DNA 2 (200,00 €)

Einleitung


Trailrunning ist eine Sportart, die sowohl Ausdauer als auch technisches Geschick erfordert. Ein Schlüsselelement für eine erfolgreiche Performance ist die Wahl des richtigen Schuhs. Der Alpine DNA 2 Unisex Laufschuh ist ein Modell, das speziell für mittellange, technische Trailrunning-Rennen entwickelt wurde. Mit seinem einzigartigen Zwischensohlendesign und der X-förmigen Pebax Platte bietet er eine überragende Reaktionsfreudigkeit und Energierückgabe bei minimalem Gewicht, während gleichzeitig die nötige Stabilität für technisch anspruchsvolle Trails und rasante Downhills gewährleistet wird. Trotz der Reduzierung von Obermaterial und Polsterung auf ein Minimum, um Gewicht zu sparen, bietet der Schuh den notwendigen Schutz und Komfort. In diesem Testbericht werden wir uns genauer ansehen, wie der Alpine DNA 2 in der Praxis abschneidet.

Thursday, April 11, 2024

Nike Pegasus 41 and Max Cushion Pegasus Premium (2025) Preview: New Life for the Venerable Peg?

Article by Sam Winebaum 

Nike Pegasus 41 ($130)


The Pegasus 41 gets the 43% lower carbon footprint ,13% more energy returning ReactX foam midsole first seen in the Infinity RN4 with here dual Air Zoom units front and back which should help with shoe response for what was a quite soft foam in the RN4.  I hope the ReactX foam and Air Zoom blend together well, and they migh,t as the former React foam and Air Zoom units were a responsive if old school firm riding combination.


We see a 4mm increase in stack height front and back with only a 8g increase in weigh,t so it's still sub 10 oz / 283g  in a US men's US9. T

The outsole still looks like characteristic all purpose and even light trails worthy, as is tradition in the Peg.

The upper will be a lighter, more breathable engineered mesh 


Weight: 297 grams (Men’s 10), 251 grams (Women’s 8)

Peg 40 was: 289 g (Men’s 10)

Stack Height: Forefront: 27mm, Heel: 37mm (Men’s 10)

Peg 40: Forefoot: 23mm Heel: 33mm


Nike Pegasus 41 is coming June 2024. 


Nike Pegasus Premium ($225)


Sorry just one picture so far highlighting the full length sculpted Air Zoom unit, a first for Nike as far as we know.


It is for sure a max cushion Peg at 45 mm heel /35mm forefoot (+ 8mm over Peg 40/41) to compete with the likes of the Superblast and Prime X Strung.


It will feature a ZoomX midsole with a ReactX heel and a new, sculpted, full length & visible Air Zoom unit. The Air unit is designed using finite element analysis of forces so is intended to engage with the foot, no matter your gait or strike pattern.  Prior Air Zoom units have been “flat”. 


The use of such a contoured Air unit in a max cushion shoe instead of a plate is a novel approach but it does appear to make the Premium quite heavy at about 11 oz / 311g US9. How it rides will tell how effective the tech combination is as much as the weight.


Spec. Weight US men’s 10: 330g/ 11.6 oz 

Avaialble Spring 2025