Monday, June 10, 2013

Product Testing: Salomon Speed Cross 3 Trail Shoes

So, I've been running my Spartan races using some old MizunoWave Ascend 5's. They were doing fine, but there wasn't much grip on the inclined walls if they were muddy and wet, plus the shoes were a half size too small which has caused me to have chronic runner's toe on my first toes (next to the great toe) that just don't get a chance to heal up.

I had been watching for shoe discussions on a couple of different obstacle course racing (OCR) pages and found that Innov8 Rocklites, Mudclaws and X-Talons were very popular and highly recommended for the "stickiness" of the rubber to help keep you up on the muddy incline walls and getting out of the mud pits. The other shoe I found mentioned fairly often was the Salomon Speed Cross 3. Now I like to try shoes on before I purchase them online (much to the chagrin of the clerk). But since there were no dealers for Innov8 in New Mexico I happened to notice the Salomon SC3 at REI on our last trip to Albuquerque. I went ahead and tried them on making sure I went up another half size to allow room for my toes. The speed laces kind of confused me, but after trying the shoes a couple of times it was no problem. I ended up purchasing them that day after checking online for lower prices while I was trying the shoes on!

I took the shoes out for a short trial run/walk yesterday on the local ATV/horse trail. Although it had rained heavily a few nights before there was little in the form of mud. When I did find any semblance of mud I ran through expecting to slip but never slipping and feeling in control at all times. In the sandy areas it was the same, just felt like I was running on top of the sand rather than sinking into it.

As it stands right now, I'm expecting some good results with this shoe and it's fairly aggressive tread and stickiness. I am kind of worried about the shoe draining water as some people have complained of that, but I'm hoping it's a non-issue. After a few mud runs/OCRs, I'll report back especially after I see how they clean up post race. For now, here's some pic of the shoes.

Before the excess lacing is tucked away.
Clasp pulled down and excess lacing tucked into
pocket on the top part of the tongue.
Pretty aggressive lugs, not sure what the little
round bumps do but the stickiness of this rubber
you can feel even walking on concrete!
Another view of the lugs...
sorry for the bits of mud!

Heel view.
Inner arch view of shoe and a better view of the lugs.

Disclaimer: Salomon did NOT provide me with these shoes, purchased them myself. Nor am I getting any form of compensation for this review. All opinions are my own.

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