The re-engineered Cloudrunner features an enforced CloudTec system. – On Running
The On Cloudrunner 2013 has a performance which is as solid as its build – coming into its own during long, endurance runs over most surfaces. Bulkier runners will find this shoe a willing companion for high-mileage training – and for that next ultra marathon.
– Remarkably comfortable over high-mileage runs
– Relatively swift performance
– Impressive heel-to-toe transition (for heel-strikers)
– Redesigned cloud pods continue to deliver superb cushioning.
– Sturdily constructed upper provides secure fit.
– A tad cumbersome over high speed workouts
– New heel pods require some adjusting to
The Cloudrunner has always been a heavy-duty trainer model – and the 315g Cloudrunner 2013 steadfastly continues this heritage. Still, the latest incarnation of this shoe brings with it bells and whistles which you’re not going to see anywhere else in the Swiss brand’s new range, making the Cloudrunner 2013, dare we say, the most interesting new shoe from On.
This being the shoe for all your outsole-destroying, long distance endurance runs, On has suitably improved the design – and layout – of the 15 cloud pods on the Cloudrunner 2013. The result: A sleek outsole which looks increasingly similar to that of conventional running shoes. Long gone are the days where the pods look like they have been stuck on with nary a second thought.
Excellent cushioning in On shoes is a given. And so is the ease with which we can midfoot- and heel-strike in them. On both fronts, the Cloudrunner 2013 doesn’t disappoint – it provided us with remarkable levels of comfort over our 25km runs. But what surprised us during our test run sessions was the superb ground feedback which accompanied the cushioning, especially at the mid- and forefoot area – the slightly firmer footbed and flatter pod profile (first seen on the Cloudracer 2012) no doubt bringing about this benefit.
Stiffer though it may be, compared to its siblings such as the Cloudsurfer, we found the Cloudrunner 2013 pleasantly springy – less due to the pods, and more as a result of the inclusion of “speedboard” just below the footbed of the shoe. “Speedboard” doesn’t appear to function too differently from Adidas’s “sprintframe”, we must add. In action, the thin, flexible grid-like plate added a nice flex to the Cloudrunner 2013’s midsole, making heel-to-toe transition (if you’re a heel-striker, that is) very smooth – and less effortful over longer distances.
The shoe has a swiftness which belies its 315g weight – handling changes in our running pace with aplomp. Still, it felt a tad cumbersome during our fast track workouts, coming into its own only during long, endurance runs over most surfaces – trail included. Bulkier runners will find this shoe a willing companion for high-mileage training – or for the next ultra marathon.
The Cloudrunner 2013’s one niggle was its firm footbed – we preferred the soft goodness of the K-Swiss Kwicky-Blade Light Neutral. Still, the shoe’s sturdily-constructed upper was a plus: It wrapped itself securely around our foot, holding the ankle in place. While not exactly seam-free, the interior of the shoe provided comfort aplenty – we were even able to use the shoe sock-free. The Cloudrunner 2013 also turned out to be quite a performer in wet and gloomy weather: Not only was the upper surprisingly water resistant, it was also made of a light-reflecting material (similar to what we saw in the Nike Shield Pack).
Gone are the staid colours of the Cloudrunners of old – the Cloudrunner 2013 is decked out in a trendy new coat of paint, proving that this shoe can look as good as it performs.
$269, available at Athlete’s Circle from Jan 2013.
If you’ve tried the On Cloudrunner 2013, we’d love to find out what you think of the shoes! Share your views in the comment box below this article or at our Facebook fan page.