The new Noosa FF joins the ASICS lineup as a performance trainer with a speedy feel, and the shoe’s triathlon roots point to its purpose. The upper is both snug-fitting and beefy enough for serious training. Welded overlays support the forefoot, and there’s plenty of toeroom.
The Transcend is Brooks’ top-of-the-line Motion Stabilizing shoe. Round 4 is a catch-your- breath round: some material improvements, but nothing earth-shattering. The majority of improvements are in the upper, beginning with the 3D-printed overlay supports that run along the surface in a linear pattern.
The new Arahi takes a different approach to design; the result is a successful blend of light weight and ultra stability, which is Hoka’s most stable lightweight shoe yet. The upper is a thin, closed stretch mesh supported by 3D-printed overlays with fused overlays in the high- stress areas.
The Ravenna straddles the worlds of cushioning and stability so beautifully that it has fans from both parties. Round 8 picks up where Round 7 left off—and then pushes the envelope. The upper is a similar semi-open, criss-crossed mesh without the forefoot welded overlays.
Experience is an asset, and it’s helped the team at 361 ̊ make considerable progress in this Round 2 update. The upper trades the traditional overlays of Round 1 for lighter weight and welded support. The forefoot offers good toe room and light support withits own welded overlays.