Released in 2011, the Brooks T7 Racer had become known as a top racing flat for the competitive runner. With a lightweight design and comfortable fit, it had proven itself among the competition as a go-fast shoe over a wide range of distances. But without an update or new racing flat for over 5 years, runners had begun to wonder what was next for Brooks? The answer to that question is simple: The Hyperion.
With a squad of Beasts gearing up for the Olympic trials, Brooks has gone all-in to provide a modern racing flat built for the serious runner. On initial try-on, the Hyperion appears to stack up quite well against the competition. Utilizing the same BioMoGo DNA midsole that is seen throughout the Brooks training line, this racer offers versatile cushioning while keeping weight at a minimum. The shock absorption of the shoe feels very in line with the ASICS Hyper Speed 7 but a higher heel-toe offset will give runners a slightly more traditional shoe feel. Although the Hyperion measures a forefoot stack height of 17mm, runners can still expect to receive a close to the ground experience you feel in a thinner racing flat. With a fairly curved shape, an aggressive toe spring, and a weight of 6.6 oz (men’s size 9, 5.5 oz women’s size 8), this shoe is a great choice for the road racer looking for a go-fast shoe in a more cushioned package.
While the Hyperion provides a quick ride, the main story of the shoe is the premium stretch woven upper. At first touch, the seamless material feels extremely soft and helps create a nice and snug foot wrap. While not overly narrow, the shoe offers a performance fit with fantastic lockdown to keep your feet in place when the paces quickens. If you are a fan of running sockless, the Hyperion creates one of the best on-foot experiences compared to other racing flats on the market. The soft texture and seamless design feels great against the foot and provides a similar experience to a high-end track spike. Along with perforated zones on top of the foot and a textured print design, the Brooks Hyperion provides a sleek profile that looks just as fast it feels.
With a responsive ride and luxurious upper, the Hyperion is a solid race day option that puts Brooks back on the map in the eyes of road racers. As a sub 16 minute 5k road racer, I personally find the Hyperion to be best suited for 10k races and up or the occasional tempo run. The shoe truly excels at longer distance races but the versatility of the shoe will also make it a great option for interval days. The responsive ride paired with a superior fitting upper give the shoe a faster feel while still providing the cushioning to come out the next day and get in longer miles. While I may look at lighter and firmer flats such as the ASICS Piranha SP 5 or the ASICS TartherZeal 3 for competitive 5k racing, the Brooks Hyperion does a good job of providing versatility and cushioning over a wider range of events.