Asics Gel-Hyper Speed 5 (sample shown)
The ever-popular Asics Gel-Hyper Speed racing shoe is a favorite among marathoners Ryan Hall and Deena Kastor. So when runners shouted don’t mess with a good thing, Asics took heed of those words and developed the new Hyper Speed 5 with few changes.
The shoe carries over the same Wet Grip outsole and Speva midsole from the last few iterations. These aspects continue to be combined with a slightly wider than average forefoot base. The result is a racing shoe that offers a bit more of a cushioned ride than typically found at the reported 7.0 oz weight (men’s sample size 9.0) and 14mm forefoot stack height. Additionally, the 7mm heel-toe offset finds a sweet spot among many runners.
So what was changed? The Hyper Speed 5 sports a new upper that maintains the key fit aspects of the Hyper Speed 4 but delivers a fresh look and a weight reduction of a reported 0.2 oz. The shoe will be available February 2012 and although the price has increased by $5.00 to an MSRP of $80.00, the shoe is still a bargain.
Asics Noosa Tri 7 Women's Shoe (only Noosa Tri text in heel and forefoot glow in the dark)
It glows in the dark. Need we say more? Well, maybe a little more.
The Asics Noosa Tri 7 (MSRP $120) is a variation of the popular, performance-oriented DS Trainer. By using the platform of the DS Trainer 14, the Noosa Tri 7 rides on a system proven to be successful for long, uptempo running. As such, it is great for the marathon portion of an Ironman triathlon. If you don’t do triathlons, that’s fine. This shoe has the balance to be used daily, for tempo runs, intervals or racing.
Overshadowed by the loud colors and unique glow-in-the dark components, this shoe’s upper delivers supreme breathability, making it ideal for hot, humid conditions.
The standard run of Asics technologies are here: Solyte midsole for enhanced cushioning and durability; Asics Gel in the heel and forefoot for added cushioning; DuoMax for mild pronation control; AHAR for outsole heel durability and a Durasponge forefoot for added flexibility and response; and so on.
Weight should be nearly identical to the Noosa Tri 6 (10.6 oz for a men’s 9.o, 9.5 oz for a women’s 8.0) and the heel-toe-offset is 10mm. But who really cares about that. The ride will be smooth and responsive for any foot-strike and the shoe is wildly cool. Look for the Noosa Tri 7 to be available February 2012.
Asics Noosa Tri 7 Women's Shoe (sample shown)
Asics Fall 2010 Neutral Shoes
In the realm of running products, it is common to hear a company’s sales representative describe a good, better, best story. The idea is that good suits the needs of the everyday runner, better adds a bit of a technological advantage for improved performance and best is hands down superior to anything else within a product line. With apparel, this is often easy to observe. The best top dries faster (stays drier longer) than the better top, which exceeds the good top. With shoes, it’s little harder to observe the difference. A technologically superior shoe does not necessarily translate to a better feeling shoe or a faster shoe, but the goal generally is for better technology to translate into an improved experience for the runner. So how do things shake out with the Asics Pulse 2 (“good”), Cumulus 12 (“better”) and Nimbus 12(“best”)?
[Take me to the Men’s Nimbus 12, Cumulus 12, Pulse 2 or Women’s Nimbus 12, Cumulus 12 or Pulse 2.]
What makes each shoe unique?
Taking advantage of trickle down technology, the Nimbus 12 incorporates the Guidance Line design that was first introduced in October 2009 with the Kinsei 3. Guidance Line is a groove that extends from heel to forefoot, which aids in the repeatability of each foot-strike along an efficient path throughout the gait cycle. At the time of this review, Guidance Line only exists in the Kinsei 3 and Kayano 16 and now the Nimbus 12.