Not gonna lie, we’re kinda hyper about how good the new Saucony Virrata is. Justin Bieber has his Beliebers, and the Chicago Bulls have their Superfans, but here at Running Warehouse, we’ve got our own little club forming: the Virratamaniacs.
Turns out, Pete Larson over at Runblogger is a card-carrying member of the Virratamaniacs as well. In his Saucony Virrata running shoe review, he found many aspects to love about the shoe, including the well-cushioned platform and streamlined upper fit. He makes a lot of comparisons to the Kinvara 2, and we think that’s a fair comparison in many respects (though of course the platform of the Virrata is level and the Kinvara is and has been at a 4mm offset.
Not to pile on the Virrata resources, but our superfan scrapbook also includes:
We’ll keep the photos of our Virrata shrine to ourselves…for now. Have you put some miles on the Virrata? We’d love to hear how you like it!
This spring, zero-drop footwear is getting a boost – in terms of underfoot cushioning and protection. Once the exclusive domain of “minimal” footwear, zero-drop designs are growing up (off the ground, that is) with thicker platforms designed to provide more impact protection.
Three big brands – Brooks, Mizuno and Saucony – have introduced cushioned, zero-drop models this year. We took to the roads in all three, and here’s how they stack up.
Likes: Excellent ground feel, flexible platform that moves with the foot, wide forefoot allows for natural toe splay
Dislikes: Many runners will want more underfoot protection, midsole pods are noticeable, upper may be too generous for some
Verdict: The Brooks PureDrift delivers a near barefoot experience suited best for experienced minimalist runners
6.1 oz (Men’s 9), $100 MSRP
The PureDrift got a lot of buzz before its January release. Known for its close to the ground feel, this shoe maintains a touch of cushioning underfoot. One of the more minimal releases of the year, the PureDrift is a treat for those looking for an almost barefoot ride.
Not as cushioned as it may appear, the extra firm underfoot feel makes it best reserved for experienced minimalist runners. Removal of the sockliner allows for an even closer to the ground experience, though testers agreed that the difference in cushioning is small.
The PureDrift platform utilizes a pod construction that delivers remarkable flexibility, especially in the forefoot. The pods are noticeable underfoot when transitioning from landing to toe-off, though the effect on the overall ride is small.
The toebox is the widest in this test, and there’s a roomy fit throughout the shoe. Runners with narrower feet may notice scrunching of excess material over the top of the foot.