The HOKA ONE ONE Mafate Speed 3 is not a new shoe it just happens to be new to me, when it dropped in July 2014 I opted for the Clifton and Huaka-(Check Out Runbloggers comparative take on Huaka and Clifton) I had just finished a training cycle in which I used the Rapa Nui 2 to prepare for the PA Grand Canyon Trail Marathon, so the Mafate wasn't on my radar. Sam took a peak at the Mafate Speed 3 when it was first released at Outdoor Retailer in 2014 check out his introduction)
With the New England snow my interest in a snow beast started to peak, first with the Newton BOCO AT and because I like variety I was curious as to how the Mafate Speed 3 would perform in the snow.
The Mafate Speed 3 dropped some weight from the last two iteration and looks more appealing. When I first started rocking HOKA's a few years ago they looked like clown shoes but, they were no joke on the down hills.
|2013 Rocking HOKA ONE ONE Stinsons|
On the strength on their performance I looked past their external appearance and focused on how they helped me perform during my training and races-not to mention the speedy recovery between runs.
|My New England Snow BEAST...|
While exchanging my BreakThru's for a larger size the owner of my not so LRS in White Plains NY was sporting a pair of Mafate Speed 3 and they caught my eye.
Westchester Road Runner was one of the few retailers in the North East to initially carry the HOKA ONE ONE brand and while giving me the ole school full service shoe fitting experience he reminisced about shipping HOKA's all over the US.
|Sculpted Arch Pod Support with a 4mm Heel to Toe Off Set The Mafate Provides a Brilliant Ride|
Truth be told, the plan wasn't to try on or pick up a new pair of kicks, I was merely looking for a 1/2 size up in the Break Thru but they were out of my size. With time to spare I yielded to the temptation, what can I say I'm a Sneakerholic.
The upper on the Mafate Features a Lightweight No Sew SpeedFrame Construction, tipping the scales at 11.3oz it's only an 1oz heavier than Triumph ISO or Glycerin 12-it looks like a lot of shoe and one might expect it to be extremely heavier and stiffer than a traditional trainer. The weight difference isn't really noticeable due in part to how responsive and flexible the shoe is given the weight and over sized sole.
|Light weight HOKA CMEVA Top Midsole |
Granted the Mafate is not a racing flat, it's a trail shoe but that didn't stop me from picking up the speed in the Mafate nor did it stop it from cooperating with my desire to go faster. When I slipped on the Mafate and tightened the speed laces I liked how the shoe felt underfoot and was curious as to how it would feel on the road.
I took them for a quick test drive on the store's treadmill which is positioned in the front of the store facing the sidewalk. The true test would come with future miles on the asphalt snow and trails.
|Full Length RMAT Midsole Delivers Responsive Resilience |
The Mafate Speed 3 has an aggressive lug pattern and flexible sole for its size. The tongue is attached to the body of the shoe forming a sockliner fit that aides in keeping debris out.
Given the frequent teen temperatures in New England, the Mafate did great job of keeping my feet warm and comfy. Some may find the upper narrow but, it worked fine for my foot type.
|Removing The Speed Laces Allows Me Customize The Fit and Feel |
On the road you definitely feel the bombproof protection, which works well for me on my long runs and aides in my recovery during my marathon training.
As with all my HOKA ONE ONE kicks I cut out the speed laces and toss in the traditional pair that comes with the shoes, they just seem to offer me a more customized fit.
|I Prefer Brighter But The Mafate Speed 3 in Silver and Black Works Well as a Snow Beast |
The Mafate Speed 3 is welcomed addition to my winter marathon training rotation and given the breathable upper I'll certainly get some use out of them during the summer months. If you're in the market for a trail shoe the Mafate Speed 3 maybe an option for you. 6pm.com and Running Warehouse currently have them on sale.