Thursday, September 06, 2012

Shoe Review: Nike Zoom Waffle Racer V

At the same time that I had bought the Nike Air Zoom Streak XC 2 from Running Warehouse,  I also bought the Nike Zoom Waffle Racer V as it was on the "liquidation" list and going at a heavily discounted price. Besides, two pairs of shoes suited my training - one for outdoor sprinting and one for the treadmill indoors.

The Waffle Racer is described as a "spikeless racing flat" for "cross-country runners". The shoe runs narrow from the heel through the midfoot and forefoot. The toebox is reportedly of medium width, but I found them a little narrow. When we run, our forefoot and toes splay out a little, therefore in the circumstances, and especially if you do not have narrow feet, I would really recommend going to a store to try the shoes out before you buy them.

A size 9 is supposed to weigh 7.5 oz - surprisingly heavier than the Streak XC 2. But there is a slip of a sole within the shoe which I ripped out for a more "barefoot" experience, and that should have lightened my shoes a little. Upon removing the sole, the Waffle Racer also felt more "barefoot" than the Streak XC 2.

Running Warehouse also described the Waffle Racer as having "excellent traction". But I would beg to differ on this point. On wet roads it felt pretty slippery and I dared not do sprints or higher speed running when it was wet.

The midsole material of the shoe is "compression molded EVA". The outsole material is "carbon rubber". The upper material is mesh / syntehtic leather. Whatever the shoe is made of, it passed the bend test easily.

On the whole, I thought that the Nike Zoom Waffle Racer V was a good "barefoot" shoe except for the narrowness of the toe box and poor traction.

Although this shoe seems to be out of stock at major online retailers, the above review is something you can keep in mind when considering later models of the same shoe.

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