Gear Review - Saucony Ride 17
A big update on Saucony's neutral daily trainer
The Saucony Ride 17 in Tide/Silver
In Brief: Saucony's Ride 17 is a major update on previous versions of the shoe. Now equipped with a PWRRUN+ midsole, the Ride 17 is a versatile daily trainer with the tools to handle logging easy miles and harder efforts alike.
|35mm (heel), 27mm (forefoot)
|35mm (heel), 27mm (forefoot)
|282g (US M9)
|250g (US M9)
The old: I've been a longtime fan of Saucony - from early versions of the Kinvara, the Triumph, the Endorphin racing spikes, even the long-forgotten Verrata, something about their shoes have just worked for me. I'd estimate I have about 300km on my pair of Ride 15s, and have used them on everything from short easy recovery runs to workouts totalling 25k. What I loved about them was how easily I could pick up the pace when I needed to - the midsole felt firm, but snappy and responsive. It was a shoe I could wear starting in warmups, through longer efforts on the track, all the way to the cooldown. I loved the Ride 15 because I felt like it could tackle just about every kind of run, but I could feel the effects of longer or harder efforts in my legs over the following days. I tend to land with a heavier stride, so to me, the cushioning on the Ride 15 was just 'good enough' for most runs.
Side by side of the Ride 15/Ride 17 - note: the Ride 15s in the above photo are half a size smaller than the Ride 17s
The new: So far I've taken the Ride 17 out on a couple easy runs and one half-marathon time trial, and I'd say that this newest version has improved on other models in every conceivable way. The PWRRUN+ foam used in the midsole is the same compound used in recent versions of Saucony's high cushion Triumph model, and it is a major change from the PWRRUN midsole used in the Ride 15 and 16. The midsole of the Ride 17 feels softer and easier on my legs, but its geometry and added rocker profile still make it quick enough to handle the harder stuff. The Ride 17 has a very smooth-feeling transition from heel-to-toe, without it feeling aggressive. Their slightly wide base does make them feel a bit too clunky during really fast efforts, but that is a very minor complaint about an overall excellent shoe.
Even better, they feel great right out of the box. The new upper features a newly designed mesh, elastic lacing, and a flexible plastic midfoot wrap to create a lightweight and breathable fit that keeps your feet locked down. I did find it was easy to cinch the elastic laces too tight causing some discomfort around the front of my ankle early on, but that problem was easily resolved with some tinkering mid-run. Since then, their fit has been superb. The Ride 17 features a gusseted tongue and increased padding around the heel collar - I had space where I needed it, but I never felt like my foot was sliding around inside the shoe.
Above: a comparison of the upper between the RIde 15 and 17; Ride 17 gusseted tongue; Ride 17 new elastic lacing system
The bottom line: This is a shoe I would reach for to use on everything from easy runs, threshold intervals, and harder efforts or long runs lasting up to 2-2.5hrs. It is a major update from its previous versions, with a softer but still responsive midsole and improved lightweight upper.