The Speed Evo R follows on the heels of the first round of successful spikes from Hoka, with innovation from road racing, the laboratory, and some creative thinking where the two experiences intersect. The upper is closed mesh, with no-sew overlays at the heel, toe, and eyestay, along with the prominent logo, the support of the foot coming largely from the minimal stretch of the fabric.
The Wire is Brooks’ top of the line distance spike, and has set the stage for their Track and Field product by its attention to detail and performance. The upper is synthetic mesh with a conforming fit, thanks to welded overlays and internal structure, which effectively holds the foot over the four spike plate.
The Freedom ISO is the first new shoe since Saucony’s EverRun midsole foam began transforming the brand’s running line. The upper is a uniform stretch mesh with the latest version of the ISO fit lacing system, which adjusts the fit with the foot while it moves. With its integrated design, the lacing doesn’t require a cage around the midfoot, so the feel is softer and smoother.
Thanks to its performance and fit, the Zante has amassed a considerable following. The upper fit has been refined with each update, but this season’s is the best yet in adapting to its curvy last. The engineered mesh may be responsible for some of the feel as it holds the foot more supportively.