Friday, March 14, 2008

Zoot vs. New Balance debate

Ok time to get back from being the stressed out college kid/arm chair theologian to the tri geek I am. As everyone knows I am sort of sponsored by Zoot and GU for the 2008 tri season ( which unfortunately means I will not be able to run in my HEAT livery (it's from Garnieau which would be breach of sponsor ship.) this season, unless Zoot doesn't ship the team uniform I will not be the familar "flame guy" at most of my races this season. sniff, sniff.) While I can attest to the quality of Zoot's wetzoots, and a few of their other products, the foot wear is an issue. I have used New Balance since I was a junior in high school. I know the products inside and out and their racing and training shoes have gotten me through 400 meter sprints to full marathons and every race in between. So when Zoot came out with their racing line I'm a little skeptical, the shoe is in its first year of production, it's been tested by pros with feet of steel, and although they look like they have an ultra high quality race flat, the lack of a true training line frightens me. Also the price tag make me a little afraid to take the risk on them, ( You spend $50-$80 on a trainer and if it sucks it hurts the checkbook but not as bad as $120.) I think I'm going to hold off on trying the Zoot ultras ( unless of course I get them for free) until I hear some more feedback on them and Zoot develops a heavier weight training line. Afterall a solid trainer usually results in a solid race comp. Although some of the features of the ultra series impress me:

Built in speed laces: so you don't have to fork over $7 for Yanks and then spend an hour unlacing and relacing your new shoes. ( I did this in NZ and it broke my heart watching daylight slip away as I struggled with the damn things.)

Seamless interior: Having torn my feet open due to interior stitches going barefoot this is a good move forward.

Hopefully there will be more good feedback after the 08 season and I might throw down for a pair but as for now I'm sticking with the good old relaible "N"'

The guy with more shoes than Roslinda Marcos


rocketpants said...

Breaking away from a known shoe brand is very hard.Me and Asics...are friends and unless they do something extremely stupid to the line I wear...i will probably continue to be their friend. I'm not brave enough to try new shoes.

Angry Runner said...

Tell them to ship you a free pair. If you're actually "sponsored", then they can sponsor your ass with some gear.

My opinion at your level of training/racing: Stick with what you got. Unlike some of us, you are NOT injury prone. If NB works, keep em around.