ASICS kindly sent me a pair of the new GEL-NOOSA Tri 12 to try and test out so here is my personal review.
So what is the GEL-NOOSA Tri 12?
ASICS claim that this shoe boasts both lightweight and breathable qualities, making it the perfect shoe for the everyday tri-runner. Designed for triathletes and triathletes Like Gwen Jorgensen who inspired me wore the older models so I was very interested to see if these where any good?
Some of the key features include:
- GEL-NOOSA Tri 12 maintains its unique design which you see in previous models whilst incorporating humancentric science and advanced technology to provide runners with energised cushioning for the fastest ride.
- The shoe is designed for a neutral runner and features the ASICS Flytefoam cushioning technology to provide a fast and energetic ride.
- Fitted with Caterpy laces on the tongue and heel to provide an easy-on for the shoe and a no-tie option, which gives runners a superior fit for their run and a quick transition.
- Quick to get on which includes stretchy knit and reinforcement in the underlay to provide an extremely comfortable fit.
- Breathable & Lightweight
ASICS state these features have been upgraded from previous models:
● New russel mesh material allows the upper to maintain durability and provides ventilation and a softer feel.
● FLYTEFOAM™ technology midsole material is lighter and more durable than traditional mid-sole foams. This is ASICS’ lightweight mid-sole material giving you a soft, supportive feel.
● Super AHAR™ heel plug in areas of heavy wear to extend the life of the shoe by using higher-abrasion rubber.
So how does it compare to my much loved Gel-451s?
The Gel-451s have bought me success over the past year and even the old Hyper Tri’s that I love…. So I put the GEL-NOOSA TRI 12 through its paces. When unpacking them I liked the colour they stood out, I love the colours of the 451s they stood out too so this ticked a box here as ASICS seem to get this right on most of their shoes. They felt light but they didn’t feel as light as the 451s. What I noticed straight away is that it came with tri laces, well that’s what I like to call them, but unlike the 451 that had a Boa system these don’t. However these have the hole in the tongue to grab and put on easier. This was one of the things I loved with the Hyper Tris with the tongue hole. Although I have got used to the Boa system on the 451s I prefer this tongue set up, so this is a win for me as I believe its quicker to put on and less fiddly when wanting a quick transition.
So I did some transition tests with putting my shoes on. If I set up the laces up right my feet can slip on easy without having to tighten them. So I did three tests on the GEL-NOOSA and the same with the 451s. The Gel- Noosa was a second quicker twice so every second counts so this ticks the box again.
The mesh material is impressive, not only does it allow your feet to breath it is light weight, a good feature to drying your feet after coming out the swim, so it lets plenty of air in. A feature I found very useful is that the material at the end of the front of the shoe, is like a light swade material. Now if you’re like me and in previous tri shoes my feet get hammed with hard material there and therefore toes getting very sore. So when testing this out without socks as that’s what I would do in a triathlon, my feet and toes didn’t feel it at the front of the shoe, so it was much more comfortable.
I have been put off by the Noosa’s in the past as I was under the impression they were a stability shoe and bulky, however I am very much wrong as ASICS have designed this shoe for the neutral runner with cushioning. They are certainly more cushioned then the 451s.
When I put them on they felt very comfortable, I did a few runs in them, mainly speed training as I wanted to test while on my speed sessions as if I am going to race in them I need to know if they stand the test. I have to admit I thought they would be slow but they felt super light and fast.
Conclusion I am very impressed with these, I was first put off by these in the past as I thought they were a bit bulky and not for neutral runners. The question is do I prefer my discontinued 451s or these. Well the answer is this is the perfect shoe for me and for triathlons. Its comfy, feels like a fast show and quick for transition. So for me this will be my new race shoe in triathlons and your be seeing me with these at races. I am very impressed by this new model.
You can check them out on the ASICS website here