Inov-8 X-Talon 230 & X-Talon 210 Review – INTRO – In Stock at NorthernRunner.com
Inov-8 X-Talon 210 & 230 Review
Part 1 – Introduction
The Next Generation of Grip?
Where It Started – X-talon 212
Inov-8’s X-Talon 212 has probably become the most popular fell and cross country shoe in the country. Originally it was designed as a cross country racing shoe. The long studs would offer grip and were placed with plenty of space between them to avoid clogging, even on the muddiest of courses. The flexible shoe would bend to the terrain to maintain grip on even the roughest of surfaces. Over time the X-Talon 212 started being used by fell runners as they too loved the light flexible feel to the shoe. This change of use led to the X-Talon 212 being made a little stiffer to offer more underfoot protection and the upper being made a bit tougher so it doesn’t get cut by scree, which makes the latest X-Talon 212 more like a Mudclaw than the original X-Talon 212.
What Is The X-talon 230?
So, Inov-8 set about designing a shoe that would be as flexible and responsive as the original X-Talon 212 but tough enough and protective enough to cope with the British Mountains. The result is the X-Talon 230.
The X-Talon 230 has the same snug fit as the original X-Talon 212. The outsole has the same stud pattern although it is now even more grippy as it is made from STICKY GRIP rubber which provides better traction in wet or dry conditions. The midsole is POWERFLOW+ to give increased shock absorption and energy return but, with the same firm and responsive feel that the original X-Talon 212 had. The upper is light, tough and abrasive resistant. The META-PLATE is designed to protect the foot from sharp rocks.
Like the original X-Talon 212 the X-Talon 230 is a shoe ideally suited to fell, mountain, cross country and obstacle course racing. Ideally on soft ground where you can take full advantage of the grippy outsole.
What is the X-talon 210?
The X-Talon 190 is also a former member of the X-Talon family. This was the lighter, more flexible and more minimal shoe. This too has been up graded to the X-Talon 210. It is 3mm from heel to forefoot compared to the X-Talon 230’s 6mm drop and so is more suited to those who land more on their midfoot. As you would expect in this type of shoe there isn’t a Meta-Plate so the shoe is very flexible to allow the foot to feel the ground. The outsole is made from the new STICKY GRIP in the same stud pattern as all other X-Talon’s. Which will make this shoe ideal for running over soft, rough ground at speed. The flexibility of the shoe also makes it ideal for using in Swim Run events. The upper is tough and abrasion resistant but, also doesn’t absorb moisture. The shoe has the same precision fit as the old X-Talon 190 so it will stay glued to your foot as you change direction.
X-Talon 212 is now stiffer and more sturdy than the original. Which has given it a softer more of a training shoe type feel.
X-Talon 230 offers improved grip and a step back to the lighter more responsive feel of the original X-Talon 212.
X-Talon 210 marks the return of the X-Talon 190. With improved upper durability and improved grip.
Charlie Stead @ Northern Runner Newcastle & NorthernRunner.com