Peter H Davy
Reviewed: 02 July 2010
A functional update to a great shoe.
Retains the advantages that made its predecessor an excellent trainer: a great balance between weight, cushioning and support that makes it an ideal race shoe for longer distances or everyday trainer if you're not too heavy. The new version also takes a couple of millimeters off the shoe's collar, which stops it rubbing your ankle bone, which is a worthwhile improvement.
The redesigned upper is no heavier, but it has lost some of the racey feel of the DS 14, with the fit feeling more like a standard trainer. It's a little less snug somehow. The toe box is also meant to be bigger, I think, but doesn't feels the opposite in fact, although it's still comfortable. Also the new styling - with fluorescent lime green touches - is unnecessarily hideous.
I liked the last version a lot, and these aren't that different. They're still great if you're looking for a speedwork, marathon racer or everyday trainer if you're light.
The support is sufficient but not too obtrusive. I doubt most neutral runners would have a problem with it, and it's enough for what I need to give a little guidance when I get tired; the cushioning does the job even up to marathon distance; and they're still pretty light - somewhere between a race shoe and a standard trainer. They're at their best when you're running reasonably fast - 6.00 minute miles or so - but they're good all round.
The real complaint is that there's not much to recommend them over the previous model. If you didn't like the fit of the DS14 these might appeal, as they're less distinctive; likewise if you had trouble with the collar on the previous version, that's been corrected. And the new sole is also meant to have better grip in the wet.
If none of these were problems for you in the the DS14, though, you're probably better off sticking with them while you can still pick them up cheap online. Personally, in retrospect that's what I would have done, and just used Vaseline on my ankle bone.
On the other hand, if you really want a change and if reckon you could do with a little less cushioning, I'd say try the DS Racer instead.