Having run in the Salomon Sense Ride 2s for the last 6 months, it was a nice surprise to receive a pair of the new Sense Ride 3 in the post last week. The freshly updated Sense Rides are similar to the older iteration but for a few subtle differences.
The Sense Ride range has become the most popular model from Salomon’s line-up after only three models. The reason being that it’s a hugely versatile shoe, equally at home on craggy mountain trails as it is on the road. This means that ultra-marathoners, as well as newbies, are likely to enjoy wearing the Sense Ride.
The main difference between the Sense Ride 2 and the new version is that the midsole features Optivibe propulsive foam, making the Sense Ride 3 feel much softer and smoother underfoot. It’s still a firm shoe but this extra cushion makes the shoe much more comfortable for road sessions, something that the Sense Ride 2 just isn’t.
That’s not to say that it’s a great road shoe- the energy return from the shoe is quite poor and they weigh more than most road-specific shoes. But once you get onto the trails, the Sense Ride 3s come into their own.
Other key modifications include the single layer debris-resistant outer which feels much stronger despite being breathable.
photo: Elliott Waring Photography shot in his home studio
Grip for days
One thing I’ve always loved about Salomon trail shoes is the grip. The Contagrip technology used on this model features high-density rubber around the edge of the shoe and a softer, more flexible rubber in the middle that seems to grip to anything. The harder rubber around the edge of the sole is more durable meaning your shoes should last a lot longer, yet the softer rubber in the middle makes the shoes feel agile and maneuverable.
Internal comfort and quick lace convenience
Like the previous two versions, the Sense Ride 3 uses a Sensifit sleeve that wraps around the foot snugly. I find the fit of the new version to feel much more secure than the older model. I think the heel and the sidewalls of the shoe are much stiffer which seems to hold your foot in place better.
Again, the Quick Lace system works really well and it’s one feature that I’ve come to love in Salomon trail shoes. The laces seem to be a little longer than in other models which isn’t really an issue as you can tuck the laces into the handy lace garage.
After only a week of running in the Sense Ride 3s, I can safely say that I really like them. Salomon has found a perfect balance between stability and agility. In the past, I’ve found Salomon trail shoes to be too heavy and clunky but the Sense Ride 3s feel light and lively, even if they aren’t particularly light. I’ll be wearing them for all my summer trail running and even shorter road sessions too.