Trail running – the new MTB
Just back from running the Hi-Tec Otter Trail Run in Tsitsikamma National Park. Absolutely beautiful course.
Apart from sponsor Hi-Tec, which is introducing its high-end Infinity range in February 2011, there were lots of interesting trail shoes on the feet of the 120 starters of the Otter Trail Run.
Minimalist UK brand Inov-8 is gaining followers among the more locally established models from New Balance, Salomon, Brooks, adidas, Montrail and Puma wearers.
It’s good to see the shoe brands picking up on the trail spirit – it’s gathering momentum fast! Many mountain bikers are now looking to trail running for the next big kick. World bronze cross-country medallist Burry Stander runs offroad. SA Marathon Champ Kevin Evans does. Former MTB purist David Leiman said it was the hardest thing he’s done. He and Matt Goetsch ran great times: 6:22 – for a first long distance trail run!
What’s the appeal to them? Going through gnarlier, more technical terrain they’ll ever be able to ride through – and although the speed is lower, the kick you get is just as big.
First there was running. Then cycling knocked it off its pedestal. Along came mountain biking and it took the top spot. And now there is something called trail running that all the long-time mountain bikers are doing…
Trail is gaining impetus. Watch it grow even bigger in 2011.