Triathlete magazine’s August 2017 issue is all about taking your triathlons off-road with all the advice and gear you’ll need to get you there. Find our trail running shoe guide in the issue, on newsstands now, and read a complete review of the Hoka One One Speedgoat 2 below.
When I received samples of the updated Speedgoat trail shoe back in April, I was eager to put some miles on it. I loved the original version that came out in 2015—or at least I did initially. The first edition of the Speedgoat was the first Hoka shoe to have a stickier rubber on the outsole to provide more traction. The biggest drawbacks of the original: the forefoot fit was too narrow for a lot of runners; and the foam was too soft, which meant that it typically bottomed out while running downhills. It also wasn’t very durable.
The Speedgoat 2 fits better, both because the shape of the upper is slightly wider and also because the mesh upper allows a more comfortable and all-encompassing, snug fit. But the biggest improvement has been the midsole foam package, which has proved slightly more firm and stable, not to mention considerably more durable. The shoe offers consistent—but not marshmallowy—cushioning, and it seems to have more resiliency than the previous edition. The traction is still outstanding, but the more consistent ride and low-profile lug configuration on the outsole gives the shoe more range for different running surfaces.
The only noticeable wear-and-tear on the shoe so far is some moderate fraying around the heel collar, but that’s to be expected while running on trails with an uneven gait. The toe bumper on the right shoe is starting to separate from the toe box, but not to the point where it seems faulty. I expect to get another month or so out of them, but as I switch gears to training for some trail running events this fall, I imagine I’ll need a new pair pretty soon.
Verdict: High marks for durability and long-haul comfort.
$140, Hokaoneone.com (9.8oz, 4mm drop)