“Race-ready, ultra-light and built for speed” is how Salomon sums up the SpeedCross2 and I could haven’t said it better, so I won’t try, rather I will give a more long winded explanation on why you should have a pair on your feet.
I was excited to say the least, as I slipped into Salomon’s Speed Cross 2 trail shoe for my first outing in them. I had high hopes for my latest pair of trail runners. These would be my 4th pair of Salomon shoes and I haven’t been disappointed thus far with the excellent features that are standard of all Salomon’s line.
Handling the Speed Cross 2’s it would be easy to be apprehensive of their ability to handle to rigors of trail running. At first glance there seems to be nothing but an outer sole and a thin foot bed in the forefoot area of the shoe, and anyone would rightly question the durability of such a light shoe.
Once inside the shoe the forefoot is cushioned nicely by the Dual Density Eva mid sole that has been cleverly hidden by the outer Mud Guard design. While it is minimal compared to a road running shoe it is perfect for a shoe design for competitive mountain running, on steep, technical trails.
The cushioning in the heal of the shoe dose not lack and offers plenty of support and Pronation Control.
Probably the most attention grabbing feature of the Speed Cross 2 (apart from its weight) is the burly looking lugs on the outer sole. As with all Salomon trail shoes, the outer sole is made from Contra Grip, which is a soft and very grippy rubber!
Having done a few races in the Speed Cross 2 on wet and slippery mud and grass I can attest to the performance of the Contra Grip and the burly lugs. These lugs add some extra cushion to the forefoot and are spaced as such that mud does not clog up between them.
I would have said the only short coming of the sole, and in fact the whole shoe, would be the lack of a rock shield of some sort, especially around the forefoot area. That was until I took the Speed Cross for a test run up Avalanche Peak in Arthur’s Pass. I covered a wide range of conditions on the test run- wet slippery rocks on Avalanche and Scott’s tracks, near vertical rock up the Avalanche track, thick mud above the tree line, sharp bed rock on Avalanche Peak’s summit ridge, snow as I run north towards Rome Ridge and slick tree roots on my way down Scott’s Track. I knew mud, wet rock and tree roots were no match for the Speed Cross2 and I confirmed that they work well on soft snow on gentle slopes, but was really surprised how well they felt over the scree and sharp rock.
There is not a lot to say about the shoes upper, mostly because there is not a lot to it, which is perfect! It’s made from a light weight mesh, which drains water well (a key feature for trail runners) and features Salomon’s great Quick Lace system.
If you spend your time running trails, especially of the steep, technical and slippery variety and are looking for a light weight trail shoe for cranking out some speedy kilometres, Salomon’s SpeedCross2 are well worth a look.
Sizes- US 5.5- 14
Weight 290gr per shoe
RRP $ 279
Contact Salomon NZ for stockist- 03 366 1122 or Salomon.co.nz