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Review: On Running Cloudracer
Posted by: Editor
Posted on: Wednesday 18th April 2012


Tags  Cloudracer  |  Matt Molloy  |  On Running


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The Cloudracer is the latest race-specific addition to the range from On Running (www.on-running.com), and their unique CloudTec™ technology. It's also the shoe that Caroline Steffen put to good use in winning Ironman Melbourne in March.

The brand has a strong triathlon connection, with multiple Ironman and eight-time Powerman Zofingen winner Olivier Bernard one of the founders of the product. We spoke to Olivier at the Triathlon Show last month (watch video HERE) to find out more.

Here we test the Cloudracer, where we called upon the current Men's Age Group Athlete of the Year Matt Molloy to act as our guinea pig. Matt is no stranger to running (or swimming, or biking!) fast, and with long-term experience of a wide range of shoes too, was well suited to review this innovative new release from On Running.


CloudracerMy first impressions of the Cloudracer were that they looked a bit gimmicky, in particular the sole. However, I'm not averse to trying things out and have got on well with Newtons in the past, although I found the zero lift model a step too far and I haven't ventured into the realms of barefoot running.

I would describe my gait as neutral and have gravitated from a fore-foot striker to a more mid-foot striker since progressing to long distance triathlons. I don‘t do particularly high run mileage (say 40 miles/week), and weigh in at about 78 kgs. My preference is for a relatively lightweight shoe and I currently train in an Asics DS racer and race in an Asics Hyperspeed.

In terms of sizing, I found the Cloudracer came up big – the pair I trialled were a UK 9, whereas I measure UK 9 ½ . Although this was a concern initially, there was no rubbing and discomfort and I found that there was some "give" once I'd worn them.

CloudracerThe first session I did in the Cloudracer was a set of ½ mile intervals on the road, circa 11k in total. Although I felt some heat under the sole, this was a similar sensation to that I've had with other shoes on my first run out, I attribute that to a first use issue. It certainly wasn't present on the second outing. I would describe the feel of the Cloudracer whilst running as "soft" and "light". I was particularly impressed with the lightness of the upper. By the time of my second run, which was a  long run, the "new" feeling had gone and I was no longer conscious of any heat under sole .

The shoes felt very comfortable and my concerns that the shoe would be too small were misplaced as I actually had to tighten the laces as I adapted to the shoe. The day after my long run, I did notice some tightness in the calf which I assume was related to wearing a different shoe, but that had subsided by my third run, which was a structured 1hr fartlek. My fourth run was a 5k parkrun on my local course, which is 3-lap loop including a cheeky climb to get the heart rate up. Whilst the shoe didn't result in knocking a minute from my 5k PB (I ran to par, so I guess they didn't make me slower!), again I felt comfortable in the shoe and I would happily race in them again.

On Runing Cloudracer

Although my initial impression was that the shoe was gimmicky and that the shoe would be "spongy", I was pleasantly surprised to find that, after the first run, I didn't notice any movement in the sole. The shoe was very comfortable and light, but offered me enough support such that I would be happy to wear them over a 5k or in a marathon. In terms of triathlon use, one concern would be the lack of drainage holes in the soles for races in the extreme heat or humidity. However, in more temperate races where the likelihood for my feet being drenched in water and sweat was less of an issue then I would be happy to wear them.


You can find out more about On Running via their website: www.on-running.com.

RRP £115, available from April 2012. Weight: 230-250 grams,


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