Monday, September 07, 2015

Saucony Peregrine 5...

By Frank

My first experience with Saucony’s trail shoe was back in year 2012 when I laid my hands of the now discontinued Kinvara TR which I bought from Johannesburg. While it worked well on rocky trails, it failed pretty badly on wet and muddy surfaces. And though I knew a lot of the Peregrine (named after a falcon) model, I did not had the chance to get my hands on it due to the demands of the minimum order quantity set and also the very niche trail market a few years back. But things started to change when Saucony Malaysia tried to bring the fourth generation in which although they didn’t manage to, they did however successfully present to me a pair of Peregrine 4 sample. And that changed how I ran trail.

If the Saucony Kinvara was to be my “To Go” road shoe, the Peregrine will be of course my “To Go” trail shoe. Part of the Run Anywhere series by Saucony and probably the most well-known, it also the most versatile in its stable alongside with its brothers (and sisters) of the Xodus and now the all new Nomad TR. 

The Saucony Peregrine 5 (middle) flanked by the Peregrine 4 by its side.

The Peregrine 4 which has won many awards including year 2014 trail shoe of the year has followed me to a few trails locally and of course internationally for the past 2 years. Conquering with it the world’s oldest desert, Namib desert, the  Three Peaks Ultra 38 Miler and Glen Ogle 33 Miler at Scotland last year, and not forgetting my first ever 100KM trail ultra at Hong Kong 100 early this year, it also experienced the shorter distance but very muddy Janda Baik race and also the Gunung Nuang Ultra back home. And I am proud to say, that the shoe fared awfully great in all the trail races I’ve participated in with it.

The Saucony Peregrine 5.

And now, after 2 years of trying, Saucony Malaysia successfully managed to bring in the fifth generation of this very popular trail shoe. Enter the Saucony Peregrine 5 (P5). 

Lateral view of the Peregrine 5.

Medial view of the Peregrine 5.

Nothing much has changed from the fourth to the now P5. Like the Kinvara series,this shoe has retained much of its DNA since it was first release to the market. Only minor changes to make the shoe lighter like stripping off layers, upgrades of cushioning and replacing stitching with FlexFilm, the feel and ride of the shoe remained almost identical at least for me from the fourth to the fifth generation. The aggressive outsole has remained the same!

Same awesome outsole on the P4 and P5. No change s or tweaks needed.

The P5 weights in a 272 Grams on a men size US9.0 making it one of the lightest trail shoes in the market currently. It is built on a stack height of 21.5MM on the heel and 17.5MM forefoot, giving the shoe a 4MM offset. And since we are now talking about the outsole, let’s just start with it. Multi directional lugs where its internal tread is built upon the XT-900 carbon rubber has proven to work well on different surfaces from rocky to muddy. A nifty trick by Saucony is where the perimeter tread is instead built on another variant of sticky high traction rubber which creates great traction at the places where you need it most. The P5 may not be the master of all terrains here, but its outsoles remain the jack of all trades. And yes, they are not prone to becoming a mud cake with the exception of the heel area during my experience at the Janda Baik race last year. Otherwise, it provides exceptionally good traction for both up and down hills, rocky or muddy.

On the midsole, the cushion is provided by a PowerGrid heel insert accompanied by a nylon rockplate on the midfoot and forefoot area to provide protection against jagged and sharp rocks without sacrificing flexibility.  The nylon rockplate certainly work well as a protective barrier as my experience at the very rocky Mount Eldons at Jedburgh, Scotland didn’t involve too much “OUCH”.


The nylon rock plate distinguish by the white/black pattern.
(internal blue rubber built on XT900 carbon rubber while outer orange tread on sticky high traction rubber)

The upper is made of light weight breathable mesh with FlexFilm overlays to hold the shoe together. The mesh is extremely soft and comfortable with it’s excellent ventilation. In fact, the ventilation is so good that I found my shoe full of Namib desert sand! Hence therefore, the internals is going to get wet when you bring it through river crossing, but it will also mean, quick drying! However, for larger debris, it will be kept out as the tongue is gusseted which allows a sock-like feel. Oh and yes, it is gaiter compatible too together with the RunDry collar to keep moisture at bay.

Readjusted FlexFilm for better foot lockdown.

Gaiter compatibility.

Padded collar on the RunDry system.

If there is one change that is worth the mentioned, will be the upgrade of the toe cap from nylon to rubber for better durability and also the “reduction” of pain should you accidentally kick a hard rock. As for the toebox, although not a 2E width, it's surprisingly reasonably roomy allowing my toes to "claw up" for that extra traction.

Upgraded nylon toe cap from the P4 to rubber on P5.

There are a few dislikes for me though. First the shoe lace has been changed to a thicker version from the flat elastic lace from the fourth. It comes undone pretty easily and I believe it's slightly heavier too. And I seriously do not know why is it so long! And I personally feel the mid foot area to be to be slightly roomy considering the adjustment of the FlexFilm. Perhaps A ProLock system to hold the foot down? And yes, a water repellent version maybe, such as the RunShield on the Kinvara 5 and 6. This may also help with keeping the smaller debris like sand out. As long it's not GoreTex.

Huge reflective on the rear with the Peregrine insignia.

The Saucony Peregrine 5 following the footsteps of its predecessor is an excellent pair of trail shoes. It has come a long way with me through trail races even before it is officially made available locally, many thanks to Saucony Malaysia. Although I’ve opt to test out the all new Saucony Nomad TR (stay tune for review) for my upcoming 70KM Vietnam Mountain Marathon, the Peregrine 5 will  take on the Three Peaks Ultra, Glen Ogle 33 and of course the Hong Kong 100 next year should I get the ballot in. And for my big one next year, maybe the Peregine 6?

The Saucony Peregrine 5 will retail at a recommended selling price of RM429 and is now available at Running Lab – Tropicana City Mall, Stadium and selected Royal Sporting House nationwide.

Run AnyWhere!

This pair of Saucony Peregrine 5 is kindly provided by RSH (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd, the sole distributor of Saucony in Malaysia as part of my ambassador program.

1 comment:

Nick Phillips said...

70KM Vietnam Mountain Marathon, the Three Peaks Ultra, Glen Ogle 33 and Hong Kong 100? OMG! I gotta unfriend you and find more friends who run flatter and shorter distances ... LOL!