Altra Vanish R $100
Altra has garnered their share of fans for their array of running shoes, and may attract more with their lightest shoe yet. The Vanish R is an ultra-lightweight racer which features both the attributes expected in a racing shoe as well as Altra's characteristic features.
The upper is a thin synthetic engineered mesh, with a saddle of mini mesh and fused overlays, which hold the foot effectively while still offering plenty of room in the toes. The midsole is a thin, zero drop design, which is adequate for cushioning, but designed to be light and quick, it's secret weapon is a thermoplastic plate which flexes to add some pop to your performance. The range is dependent on your fitness and your build, as well as your running style. The outer sole is small portions of carbon rubber, with the remaining area toughened foam. The result is a racing shoe which delivers a light, fast feel, somewhat at the expense of durability, but your performance is the winner.
Testers: “Light, fast, with nothing to slow it down. Just enough protection for race day.”
Sizes: Unisex 4–13,14,15 (Women 5.5–16.5)
Weight: 5.2 oz. (men’s size 11)
Fit: snug heel, roomy forefoot
Construction: Strobel slip-lasted
Range: efficient runners - up to 30k perhaps a marathon; heavy strikers, between 5K and 8K