The much anticipated OCR shoe for 2015 has finally landed and we’re excited to see what this shoe can do. We put the X-Talon 200 to the test to see if it stands up to its big brother, the X- Talon 212.
The Inov8 X-Talon 200 is the company’s first specific off-trail OCR running shoe. It’s been designed to eat obstacles, mud, rain and mountains for breakfast and it does this by adopting the legendary X-Talon Sole.
I headed out on my usual OCR Training Sunday trail run to put the X-Talon 200 through its paces.
At first glance the colours didn’t appeal to me. They’re a bit brighter than a shoe I would normally wear but that all changed as soon as I put them on. I instantly fell in love with them and was shocked with how comfy they are. I knew straight away there was something different about them.
They had everything I loved about the 212, with a wider toe box and improvements overall.
The X-Talon 200 is a lightweight beast with a low profile 3mm (1 Arrow) heel stack midsole. I normally run with the X- Talon 212’s and the very first thing I noticed was even though it was lower to the ground I somehow couldn’t feel each step as much as I used to, like I had lost some proprioception ability to feel the ground.
I did feel lighter on my feet and there was less pressure overall and I think this is due to the new Standard Fit, which includes a wider toe box allowing your toes to splay when running. I quickly got used to it and realised that instead of really feeling the impact of every step like I do in the 212’s, I had better overall support and was much lighter on impact with the ground.
The grip was still first class and something I felt at home with the X-Talon sole and this shoes just breathes so well with the new high performance breathable mesh at the forefoot.
The X-Talon 200 is impressive and almost perfect to tackle any trail, mud, water and obstacle race.
Let’s take a look at the new and overall features of the X-Talon 200.
• Upper: A new high performance breathable mesh fabric at the forefoot with added side / heel protection that’s quick drying and offers superior drainage and durability in all weather conditions.
• New full coverage rubber toe box for durability in the worst conditions.
• New STANDARD (S) fit, a wider toe box to better suit wide feet or allowing natural foot splay over long distances.
(S) STANDARD FIT. It includes a wide toe box, allowing toes to splay when running or lifting weights. STANDARD FIT is ideal for athletes with wider feet and / or those doing longer training sessions. The standard fit collection has a shorter overall length than our PRECISION FIT shoes, approximately a 1/2 size.
• Foot bed: Comfortable and interchangeable foot bed contains micro holes to aid in releasing water in wet conditions.
• MidShoc: Molded cupped MidShoc™ midsole offers the best balance between comfort and underfoot sensitivity for both long and short runs.
• Sticky rubber: Grippy and sticky rubber outsole offers ideal traction in the baddest conditions.
• Meta-Flex™ insert delivers a controlled but natural forefoot flex.
• Met-Cradle™ lacing cradles the forefoot behind the metatarsal heads to provide a secure foot hold while running up or down hill, in and out of mud and everything in between.
• Ropetec: Added to make the shoe even more suited to the rope climbing challenges of Adventure races and OCR alike.
• Weight: 200gm (Approx)
• Stack: Heel 9mm / 6mm
• Drop: 3mm
• Midsole: Injected EVA
• Footbed: 6mm
• Cleat Depth: 8mm
If you’ve been eyeing off the X-Talon 200 for a while now you will not be disappointed, there isn’t really any negative to it other than the colour options but it grows on you and for that I give this shoe a 5 out of 5.
Remember Standard Fit is approximately ½ size shorter in overall length so look at getting one size up if you’re already pretty tight in fit for your size with Inov8 shoes.
What are your thoughts on the X-Talon 200 review, do you like the colour and how did you find them overall?