The Trance is a shoe that is classified by Brooks as their flagship support trainer with the most bells and whistles of any model in their support category. Yet the shoe at times seemed a bit lost. Yes it sold, but not nearly as well as the Adrenaline or the Beast which are industry leaders in their class. Customers know what to expect from these models every year and Brooks not only meets but exceeds these expectations. The Trance on the other hand seemed to be heading in a slightly different direction with each new model update. Brooks tried for years to establish the Trance with its own identity, yet it never really was a consistent story. The annual change of direction never allowed the model to gain much traction in the industry. The vision started to sharpen with the current Trance 9 and it now appears Brooks has a very clear direction for the shoe. With the new Brooks Trance 10, your search for a high end Adrenaline has been found.
Brooks started with the qualities that make the Adrenaline so popular and added the bells and whistles to encourage people to trade up. Key features that make the Adrenaline what it is are the fit, the ride and the support. Brooks didn’t overthink it, they made the new Trance 10 using the same Universal Last as the Adrenaline so the fit will be very similar. The Trance 10’s midsole shape and support mimics the shape and support of the Adrenaline, plus the footprint and forefoot flex grooves are consistent between models. With these carry over design features the fit and inherent ride characteristics of the Trance 10 should be very similar to the Adrenaline.
Where Brooks made upgrades was in enhancing the fit, cushioning and ride characteristics of the Trance 10 over the Adrenaline. To address the varying body frame sizes and the resulting wide variances in fit likely to be drawn to the Trance 10 price point, Brooks incorporated adjustable eye stays and Flextra, a more flexible construction of the forefoot that optimizes forefoot flex to help improve fit. To enhance the cushioning characteristics of the Trance 10, full length DNA is used instead of the separate Hydroflow units of the Adrenaline. The Trance 10 features softer rubber (Flexalon) and a thicker midsole in the forefoot to aid in toe off plushness. Brooks added a full length Caterpillar Crash-pad to further soften the ride, while improving the heel-to-toe transition. To make the shoe more luxurious the Trance 10 features a plusher collar lining, a softer tongue and thicker collar foams to improve in-shoe feel. Finally, the Trance 10 features a more robust heel cradle for increased stability. The use of richer and deeper materials in the upper add a higher end feel to the new Trance 10.
All told, the new Brooks Trance 10 is a very nice update. A plusher Adrenaline for those who desire a bit more than the Adrenaline, but with many of the same benefits which make the Adrenaline very popular. The direction for the Trance 10 is now clearly established and makes perfect sense. A job well done. Expect to see the new Brooks Trance 10 at Running Warehouse in January 2011 with a MSRP of $140.