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Photo credit: inov-8

INOV-8 TRAILFLY ULTRA G 300 MAX

04-Aug-21


By Alice Morrison

I’m running in Eddie Izzard’s shoes – literally! inov-8 had knocked up a pair for her with her name on and when I needed a review pair, she hadn’t collected them, and we are the same size so….. bingo. It feels a bit weird to be honest, but it is the only thing about the shoes that does.

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Eddie Izzard's shoes! Photo credit: Alice Morrison

Features and technical details

  • Fit Scale 5
  • Drop 6mm
  • Footbed 6mm Boomerang
  • Lug Depth 4mm
  • Intended Use Hard and Rocky, Paths and Trails, Road
  • Midsole G-FLY
  • Midsole Stack 25mm heel / 19mm forefoot
  • Shank DFB
  • Sole Compound GRAPHENE GRIP
  • Product Weight 300g
  • RRP - £170

Pros: What’s good about the inov-8 TRAILFLY ULTRA G 300 MAX

They are roomy. My feet have flattened and got bigger with the amount of time I’ve spent on them, especially after crossing the Sahara, so I want space for my toes to spread out and breathe and the wide toe box gives that.

The big selling point for the shoe from inov-8 is the graphene technology. They say on their site that the shoe features “ the world’s first Graphene-enhanced foam, called G-FLY. The foam delivers 25% greater energy return and retains its optimum levels of underfoot rebound and comfort for longer’. I couldn’t put a percentage on it but I found that these shoes do absolutely help with fatigue and they rebound really nicely. I felt fresher than I have in other shoes on longer outings.

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Testing terrain. Photo credit: Alice Morrison

Interestingly, they have a deep groove in the sole in between the heel and the forefoot. It is designed for flexibility and it did give me more roll/bend in my foot which I liked.

inov-8 recommend the shoes for hard and rocky trails and I did all my testing of these shoes in the Atlas mountains where the trails are just that. They are heinous in fact! At one point I lost my way and ended up scrambling up a few hundred metres of loose rock face, baked earth and slippery marble-like pebbles. The lugs did really well on grip, not letting me down at any point even when I was scrabbling and foreseeing a nasty tumble down to the bottom. They were also good on the descents, digging into the surfaces.

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Atlas Mountains. Photo credit: Alice Morrison

Cons: What’s not so good about the inov-8 TRAILFLY ULTRA G 300 MAX

They are quite a big shoe and I find that by the end of the day when I get clumsy from tiredness, I trip over myself. Any shoe that offers this much cushioning is going to have a pay off in terms of connection to the ground. After a 13-hour stint I had two hot spots on my right big toe and under my left heel (says very bad things about my walking and running gait). The heel turned into a small blister.

The Atlas Mountains eat shoes, and I have a slight concern about durability, because of the depth of the lugs and the sponginess of the sole. So far so good, though, and looking at other people’s reviews of them, they seem to wear well.

The upper is almost all mesh which is great for the heat but it does mean a lot of sand and detritus drifts in.

They aren’t cheap.

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Conclusion

Bouncy, responsive and grippy. These shoes are designed for rocky hard trails and they deliver. For me, they help with fatigue in the legs and yet keep me to the ground. I’m using them all the time at the moment and they are holding up really well in difficult conditions. They do exactly what the manufacturer says they will – always a good thing. Eddie – I definitely think you should give them a go….

 

Score  
Design 8/10
Features 9/10
Performance 9/10
Value 7/10
Overall 8.5/10



About the writer: Alice is a slow but steady runner. She prefers ultras because that plays to endurance. She lives in Morocco in the High Atlas mountains characterised by very challenging ascents and sometimes scary descents. She is also a big fan of the desert and has walked the length of the Sahara.  Her latest book, Adventures in Morocco, tells her Marathon des Sables story and more adventures from Morocco.

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Review INOV-8 TRAILFLY ULTRA G 300 MAX

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