it's hard not to be struck with a 'love at first sight' impression from these shoes. i opened the box to see the gold/black New York colourway, and the words "Limited Edition" printed on the non-removable insole. how can you feel anything but special when you don 'limited edition' racing flats?
so how did i really feel about them?
- fit - let's tackle this one off the top. it was my biggest concern with this model, and as they were provided to me they weren't sized up or down compared to my other SPD shoes. the first slip-on was surprising, as i definitely did not feel as cramped in the forefoot as i'd expected. form-fitting would be a good way to describe it - a little north of snug and a little south of 'generous toe-box'. length was spot-on, and i liked the way that the heel fit (not too high on the achilles, not sloppy at all). although these shoes have very cool printed overlays and not stitched ones, i still opted to skip cross-lacing the first pair of eyelets like i did with the GORun Ultra to allow for a bit more breathing space.
- weight - many other people have commented that these shoes just feel fast, and i have to agree. at somewhere a hair over 7 oz. per shoe, there's a 'hardly anything to them' kind of aura to them. as a racing flat, this means that there's just enough structure to them to help your feet experience some support (especially in the later stages of a longer run like the marathon) without wearing you down by forcing you to carry unnecessary weight with every stride.
- drop - listed at a 4mm (18mm heel, 14mm toe) drop, the GOMeb Speed 2 give the impression of being level and low. this shoe provides just the right platform for a mid/forefoot striker to activate all of the necessary tendons and muscles for efficient coiling and propulsion through the running gait.
- outsole - i've found that most racing flats will give you very little jazz in terms of textured outsole design, basically because its about maximizing traction and ground contact. the GOMeb Speed has a fairly straight-forward dimple/pod design, with strategically distributed GOimpulse rubber sensor pods (M-strike design) for durability and enhanced traction. the remainder of the outsole is Skechers' proprietary ResalyteTM mid-sole material which is tough enough while keeping the overall weight down. all in all it's plenty grippy, doesn't pick up gravel (unless you manage to lodge it in the space where the stability plate is visible).
- midsole - a nice firm midsole which is great for a racing flat ... i definitely look for a stable platform which offers good impact rebound rather than cushy-ness for my marathons. add to that the Dupont HytrelTM stability plate for some added 'pop' (which proved helpful over the last 7km of this year's mississauga marathon) and this shoe offers outstanding racing performance.
- aesthetics - these are a seriously groovy pair of kicks. this colour combo is flamboyant without being flagrant ... you could totally wear them out for a night on the town and they would look cool without screaming 'jock'!
- laces - the GOMeb Speed 2 comes with two sets of laces, and while they contribute to the overall lusciousness of the shoe i found that they lacked the elasticity of 'standard' laces. this might be part of creating a tight riding package for racing - and while they don't bother me at all while running there's something about the feel of laces without any give that makes me think that they belong on dress shoes.
here's the full video review for you as well:
i know that it becomes rather trivial to post a 'footprint rating' when it just appears as if i'm in desperate and utter love with all Skechers Performance Division footwear, but let me share two quick notes in passing:
- i am providing an honest - not obligatory - review of the shoes that i receive as a Skechers Performance brand ambassador.
- i will soon be reviewing a pair of Skechers running shoes to which i will not be giving a full five-footprint rating (shock and awe)!
... but for now, the GOMeb Speed 2 receive a well-earned five out of five.
*** disclaimer: i was provided with the GORun Ultra by Skechers Performance Division (Canada) but was not obligated to provide a positive review. all opinions - however poorly expressed - are my own.