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Light as a racing shoe, but cushioned like a training neutral. Or dynamic and reactive, but with a pinch of structure that makes it almost stable. No, Maxi, but the Natural style. Could Saucony have all gone crazy?

Take a look at their latest collection of running shoes with your eyes and the more "traditional" logic you would say!

Yet they have taken this time again ....

IsoFit-part Saucony is undoubtedly one of the most innovative brands in recent years. Unlike the "big" brand of sport, often forced to make small steps to avoid risking false steps, brands such as Saucony, which are also among the big ones in the running market, have shown in the last 4 or 5 years Know how to move quickly and dynamically. So much innovation. Any chance. Errors, of course, that spent were erased in the most radical way: starting from the head where it was wrong. Let's remember that Saucony was the first to make a very radical choice: lower the differentials of all his 8 mm running shoes . A choice that has left "on the street" so many dissatisfaction, some controversy in science, but also many new customers, as its sales are constantly growing.

In the 2015 collection I think I have made a further step. Not only is it launching the new IsoFit technology, which actually solves some of the problems of the previous uppers, but especially because it has been able to relocate all its models in a very transversal fashion to the old (and even more insignificant categories A2, A3, A4 ... unpublished ...).

In the catalog there are very interesting evolutions of classical models such as the Triumph, the Ride and the mythical Kinvara. But above all, there are two novelties that the first can leave interdicted: Zealot and Breakthru.

I would like to talk about these novelties, as many runners have asked me for an explanation. And be prepared for a complex journey in the new geometry of running ...

SAUCONY_Breakthru Let's start with the Breakthru that I find one of the finest shoes I have ever run with, unless my weight (74Kg) prevents me from using it for long distances.

Her first beauty lies in her diversity: looking at her looks like a racing shoe. Low middle intersuola profile (front 15 mm and rear 23 mm), moderate amortization, but it favors reactivity. This model represents the first of the paradoxes we discussed at the beginning. A very light shoe (only 244 gr) for a neutral cushion that lies between an intermediate and a daily workout shoe. It has been constructed with an extremely lightweight and breathable upper, but also very enveloping. Padding of the tongue and collar makes it comfortable while not weighing on the structure. Interestingly, the medial area of ​​the intersuola, designed to provide a pinch of extra strength that translates into a more pronounced support of pronation, useful to the lightest pronators, but also to those who exceed the pronation when running on very long distances.

So a real racing shoe, built with a traditional drop. For Saucony experts, I would put this model between the traditional Mirage (race) and the Ride (by training). Category? There is no: Simply dedicated to medium and lightweight runners who have a good step and are looking for a lightweight, quick shoe but with a pinch of texture.

saucony-zealot Zealot is the second paradigm of Saucony. Pure lightness and flexibility, for a shoe designed with a 4mm differential, to go to the Natural models and the most challenging racing shoes, but with a cushion that is almost equal to that of the Ride. With its weight of 235 grams, you should ask: Race or training shoes? I would argue for the first hypothesis. Looking at the rest of the collection, I would put this model between the Kinvara Natural Style Icon and the Ride 8 , a very lightweight, dynamic daily workout shoe.

The midsole is in Powergrid + , the latest generation of Saucony compounds. This is a lightweight and very dull Eva, which allows to work with lower thickness than in the past, while maintaining a good level of amelioration. The front is very well cushioned with the 21mm thicker of the intersuola, against the 25mm of the heel, which makes it more suitable for those with more advanced support. You think the BreakThru has a thickness in the front of only 15 mm (the Kinvara has 18mm). The upper is very similar to that of Kinvara , with little collar and tongue padding and a really natural style, more inspired by freedom and total flexibility than containment.

It is the right shoe for those who are looking for a freer curve and a race with more focus on midline and forefoot. Almost a slipper, which by its nature is best suited to medium-light neutral runners and effective racing technique.

saucony-Kinvara-6 Kinvara 6 is no longer a mystery even for Italian runners. In the US, version 5 was chosen as a shoe of the year by Runner's World. Essentially because wearing it is like not having it at your feet. Natural in style, but with a pinch of cushioning. Version 6 was left untouched in the Powergrid intersuola with a thick 18 mm in the front and 22 mm in the heel (drop 4 mm). What is winning does not change, they have had to think in Saucony, all the way has been introduced a new lacing system that wraps the middle part of the foot in a sort of cradle that makes it more firm. The weight is 218 grams.

saucony-triumph-iso It's almost useless to talk about the new Triumph Iso . Always the Top Gamma shoe (unfortunately also in the price), in this new shape is a real shoe for everyday workout. Soft and cushioned, but at the same time capable of a discrete reactivity. The upper is very cozy and soft and the new Isofit lacing system makes a leap in quality in fit fit. I know someone has found it annoying at the front of the lacing, but as with any shoe, it's always good to check if it is suitable for the anatomy of your foot. But the real news is in the intersuola, in Powergrid +, lighter and more amortized. In this case, Saucony abounded by adding a mm thicker than the past. The midsole is 21 mm in the front and 29 mm in the rear. Almost a Maxi, dedicated to who is heavier and makes so many miles.

saucony-ride-8-2 A great surprise for me was Ride 8 . I must say that at first I had a certain skepticism in me with the use of a very light upper and without reinforcements sewn on a shoe designed to make many kilometers. After running for more than a hundred miles, I have to stay with every perplexity. I think it's a particularly successful version, as is usually the closest ever older sister, the Triumph. The upper also holds my weight and my foot quite flat. Surprisingly the midsole that appears immediately soft and well cushioned. This is much more than the previous version, although both have been made in Powergrid. The thickness is 18 mm in the front and 26 mm in the heel, with a drop of 8 mm, just like in the previous version. The weight, just a few years ago, would have seemed incredible for a training shoe, today those 266 grams of the man version are no longer a primacy, but they represent a good compromise. Much more than in this model has been the widespread use of Ibr + abrasive rubber that makes it certainly more durable. In addition, I found interesting the shape of the shoe which, while being absolutely neutral and free of anti-prone support, can support the bow and the slight pronation phenomena that may occur when the foot has been and the supports are Heavier.

Saucony_spencer-white It's a few years since I follow the American brand that has its general quiz just a few steps from Boton and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology . Mr Spencer White, a science fellow who is head of Saucony's Human Performance & Innovation Lab, has become accustomed to many evolutions and revolutions. Judging by what Saucony has announced next year, I would say that the revolution is all over.

(From Runner's world - by Rosario Palazzolo)

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