New Balance 1080 v12 review
I went into MyRaceKit intending to buy a pair of New Balance 880s. I’ve had a couple of pairs of these before and they are a great every day running shoe, perfect for easy miles and long runs. I’ve managed to get around 600 miles each out of the last pairs I had which is pretty good economy. Of course, when in the shop, I’m presented with a wall of opportunity. From Brookes to Salomon there’s always something exciting to try on.
I tried on a few different shoes before making it to the New Balance 1080s, the first thing that struck me was the colour. I love all things orange, and these are such a bright tangerine it’s almost offensive, but to me they look incredible. They are also available in black if you prefer a more sensible colour! As soon as I put them on though they instantly felt ‘right’. I had a bit of a jog on the treadmill and they instantly stood out from the rest of the shoes I had already tried on.
The 1080s have plenty of cushioning and feel incredibly smooth, while still retaining plenty of ‘pop’. I tend to find that some of the more cushioned shoes can feel too soft and unresponsive. This is not the case with the 1080s, I would be more than happy to wear these on slightly faster runs as well as the easier miles. In fact, I have found them very versatile for what I intended to be an everyday mileage shoe. While they aren’t quite in the same league as some of the plated racing shoes, they are very responsive; in a progression run from easy to 10k pace they handled everything with ease.
The upper is soft and comfortable, but provides enough strength that you don’t feel like you’re going to slip out of them. On the underside, the grip is plenty to handle all road surfaces and very light, dry, trails.
When there are so many shoes to pick from, with some specialising in faster training runs, others in easy miles and long distances, the New Balance 1080s do everything, and I would be more than happy to use them for all kinds of runs apart from racing. If you just want one pair of road running shoes, this would be the pair I recommend.
One thing to note is that they are true to size. I’m normally a UK 10.5 in most brands, but a UK 11 in New Balance shoes. However, for the 1080s a UK 10.5 is perfect.