PBT: 294g; Racer: 275g
Changes happen only occasionally in the world of fell shoes, so a new Walsh is big news even though it may sound like small news. Walsh has developed a new abrasion-resistant overlay, and used it to upgrade and rename two of its shoes its racing version, and its slightly reinforced fell training shoe, the PBII.
Everything else is the same as before, but the overlay makes a noticeable difference on rocky surfaces. It gives the foot a little more protection, and should reduce tearing around the arch, which is a traditionally vulnerable point. You do pay for this with a extra weight not so much on the PBT XTreme, but a hefty 40g on the racer. This, ironically, makes the old PB Trainer (which is still available, at 252g) lighter than the new PB Racer XTreme, though the racer has a lower, more surefooted design. Fortunately for Walsh, the PB Trainer is also fractionally lighter than the racing shoe of its nearest competitor, Felldancer
If none of this makes sense to you, all you need to know is that Walsh and the other fell-shoe manufacturers make amazingly grippy shoes for running on hillsides, mud and soft surfaces. Theyre basic, but effective.
Walshs new Xtreme shoes gain durability for rocky running, though the new technology makes the Racer a little weighty.
Try it on if you liked
Walsh range; Felldancer range;
Adidas Swoop (£60)