We review these great entry-level running shorts.

Triathlon Reviews - Running ShoesBrooks T6 Racer

£55

www.brooksrunning.co.uk

173g

A super-light slipper for races up to 10K, this can clearly go the distance for lighter runners: it’s Chrissie Wellington’s favourite shoe. It’s stripped down, very breathable, and very flexible, with not much cushioning. The soft brushed inner is really comfy and although it’s not seamless, we had no problems running without socks, even on hot sweaty days. The minimal construction gives brilliant contact with the road. There is a little bit of security from overlays on the upper which lock in to the laces. Swap in elastic laces and they’re as easy to slip on as any other shoe. However, the narrow shape won’t suit everyone.

VERDICT

Great stripped-down racing slipper for light, fast runners

Performance: 4/5

Value: 5/5

Overall: 4/5

TOP VALUE AWARD, ISSUE 18, AUGUST 2010

Triathlon Reviews - Running ShoesBrooks Launch

£70

www.brooksrunning.co.uk

264g

This nice little lightweight neutral shoe is not as aggressively racy as the T6, but a great stripped-down entry-level racer. It’s more of a beginner-friendly number because it’s an everyday cushioning shoe with some of the weight taken off than a pure speed stepper. The wide forefoot, lower outsole flexibility and reasonably sturdy MoGo foam cushioning mean it’s a good choice if you have mild stability issues. However, with no structural support from dense foam or solid arch support, it’s not one for the heaviest runners. The inner lacks the ‘Mmmm’ factor of some of the plusher shoes on test.

VERDICT

Not the most exciting racer we’ve tried, but a good value starting point.

Performance: 3/5

Value: 4/5

Overall: 3/5

Triathlon Reviews - Running ShoesAsics Gel Speedstar

£70

www.asics.co.uk

We’re all for a firm ride when it comes to racing, but the Speedstar was too harsh for some of our testers. It’s a lightweight performance shoe but it’s overly rigid, making it hard to pick up the pace and get up on your toes. Then there’s the mesh upper, which was breathable and lightweight, but so thin that we could feel the Asics emblem rubbing on the outside of our feet. Asymmetric lacing is designed to take the pressure off the bones on the highest part of your foot; some testers liked this, some couldn’t get on with it. You may be OK if you’ve got narrow feet, but theses shoes caused discomfort among testers, many of whom had run in Asics shoes for years.

VERDICT

A decent, firm shoe that would have been great value if just a bit more comfy.

Performance: 2/5

Value: 3/5

Overall: 2/5

Triathlon Reviews - Running ShoesK-Swiss Blade Light Run

£70

www.kswiss.com

261g

K-Swiss sponsor many top UK triathletes, so we were intrigued to see how these lightweight training shoes performed. The obvious feature was the outsole, which was made from the same white foam material used in the midsole. While this saves weight, we kept finding gravel embedded in the sole when we went for a run. We also found the heel high and intrusive when we landed. But they performed solidly, giving a good blend of breathability, comfort and low weight. They’re better suited to training, but don’t feel as chunky as they look, and have nice heel and tongue loops to help you pull them on.

VERDICT

Decent, solid, light trainer, well suited for runner with wide feet.

Performance: 3/5

Value: 4/5

Overall: 3/5

Triathlon Reviews - Running ShoesK-Swiss K-Ona

£70

www.kswiss.com

264g

This shoe has been “tested and proven by K-Swiss athletes” and it’s clear a lot of effort has gone into this shoe. There’s an impressive amount of technology for the weight, with a hard plastic midfoot unit to give stability, an injected plastic support cage in the upper, and a durable rubber outsole. There’s also plenty of cushioning. Vents keep feet cool and dry and seams inside have been taped for sockless comfort. But testers had mixed feelings. The running experience was good, with a surprisingly agile and light ride, but we were disappointed by the lack of tri-specific touches – no heel or toe loops, for example. We also experienced some irritation from the inner.

VERDICT

Lots of great ideas and good mix of support and light weight, but needs tweaking.

Performance: 3/5

Value: 3/5

Overall: 3/5