THE NORTH FACE FLIGHT VECTIV: CARBON PLATE TRAIL RUNNING SHOE TESTED, 250KM
THE NORTH FACE FLIGHT VECTIV: great reactivity. Try 250 km for Sabugo. Our #patroncarrerasdemontana has been able to try the first mountain shoe with carbon plate.
Just over a month ago, we showed you the first technical analysis sharing with you all the details of the model, and now, our colleague Jorge shares with us how the shoes have been perfromning. Remenber, the same shoes that Pau Capel tried last summer to go below 20 hours at UTMB.
THE NORTH FACE FLIGHT VECTIV: DATA SHEET.
- Price: 200€, .
- Weight 267 gr
- Drop: 6 mm With a floor height of 28 in front and 34 at the back.
- Sole Width: 10.5 cm front and 8.5cm at back. The usual in shoes that seek agility and precision when stepping.
- Upper: unique piece, with matryx fabric side reinforcements.
- Midsole: Dual density EVA, ROCKER 3D carbon plate.
- Sole: Surface CTRL.
It arrives with a 200€ PVP, 267gr weight and a 6mm drop. In addition to the three-pillar mechanical system of Vectiv, common to the entire range, the brand argues that they will be very durable thanks to the Kevlar reinforcements of Matryx fabric. The polyamide cover not only seeks to be breathable but also to be an active support.
Own manufactured by the American brand. With a great grip in all kind of terrains, be it stone, track, trails, with loose soil or grass. They behaved well in wet, though here I’ve been more measured when it comes to risking. Small prominence lugs, do not make them suitable for very muddy areas, obviously not all shoes fit everything. On the other hand, after 250 km, the wear of the heels is already noticeable.
A rocker-shaped dual-density EVA rubber forms the midsole, to facilitate forward drive when the support is more heel favoring the transition. They have a slightly hard touch, keeping this touch with the passage of the kilometers, so the feeling of the first kms. will be the one we will have throughout the life of the shoe.
Named 3D for its lateral elevations on the vertical plane that seek greater support and stability by hugging the heel and small side flaps at the front. The impulse gain is more than remarkable thanks to the rigidity of the carbon, as long as the runner prints enough energy to flex it. On the contrary, this rigidity prevents transverse twists, which, together with the high heights from the ground, make it somewhat unstable, so if you are not a runner with great technique and with precise support it is easy to twist your ankle on broken and technical terrain.
Polyamide monostone in the shape of a sock and with side buttresses in Matrix fabric that give a greater support and fixation to the foot. Its front is wide to accommodate the fingers, with a very breathable fabric and a point of elasticity that give it great comfort. It closes to the ankle in sock mode, making it very comfortable and airtight, preventing dirt or small stones from entering the shoe. In the heel area the carbon support secures the foot well, next to a padded area in the upper part that hugs the Achilles area. All this gives it great comfort and no areas of friction or uncomfortable points.
THE NORTH FACE FLIGHT VECTIV:
CONCLUSIONS BY SABUGO AFTER THE TEST.
The first thing to highlight is the gain of momentum, reactivity, thrust, technological doping? or let’s call it X. But, careful not everything is so beautiful. Excess stiffness can play us badly in very technical terrain. We’ll have to chose carefully in what areas do we run with them.
If we’re going to go through technical terrain, and we’re one of those who have to seat up to pass thought, little, to say none, performance we’re going to take out of the carbon plate. On side supports or fordes, stiffness and height make it unstable by making external ankle sprain easy.
FLEX CARBON, A CHALLENGE
On the other hand, to obtain that gain, we will have to flex the carbon, which will force us to have a powerful stride, a good muscle that prints that force and supports the metatarsal impact, so we will get the most out of them in shorter races where we can squeeze them more.
However, thanks to the rocker shape of its sole, if fatigue leads us to heel, and I say fatigue, because if you heel from the beginning the carbon performance will be zero and it is better to look for something without carbon plate, since it will be less rigid, lighter and more economical. As I said, at the time of heeling, the rocker will make us more comfortable that transition heel, toe, takeoff, minimizing the impact of support and braking forces when heeling.
The North Face Vectiv flight turns out to be a very comfortable shoe, although we focus a lot on the analysis of the lower part, the cover is also very noteworthy. Its very breathable and comfortable fabric, housing widely and giving freedom to the fingers. The boot mode with ankle closure makes it comfortable and watertight, with very noteworthy comfort in the area of the heel and the Achilles tendon.
THE NORTH FACE FLIGHT VECTIV: CONCLUSION.
Is it the investment really worth it? First we would like to highlight that the runner should have a good mountain technique, with good and stable supports and that is not prone to ankle sprains. Although more than relying on the runner, it will depend on the terrain for which we choose to run with them, so if is a very technical race better to opt for another model.
The more “runable” the race would be, more worth it will be the carbon plate, but also the more powerful and stronger the runners stride will be. All this does not come free, so the runner must have a good physiognomy to withstand at high pace.
The runner type will be the one that defines the ideal distance of use, according to its physiognomy. You can get more out of them in shorter races, but they can also be ideal for long distances as their rocker shape makes it very easy and comfortable to roll with them at low intensity.
My personal conclusion is that it is a very complete shoe, which benefits, both at high paces, or makes it easy for us to roll at low rates. We will seek to avoid very technical terrain and special attention to the supports on the side of the shoe.
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