The Nike Zoom Vaporfly 4% shoe has been revamped from toe to heel following feedback from top marathon runners, creating a second iteration called Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next%.
It features an improved upper that uses Vaporweave, which Nike says is lighter than its Flyknit. The material is also breathable but absorbs far less water from sweat or rain, so the shoe stays airy and dry over the course of a marathon.
Additionally, the midsole has been re-tooled to further increase energy return while the laces are slightly offset to alleviate pressure along the sensitive part of the foot. Nike has also included a thin foam pod inside the heel.
Meanwhile, feedback from the likes of Eliud Kipchoge, Geoffrey Kirui and Mo Farah led to custom traction patterns to improve the forefoot grip so the shoe handles better in wet weather. The outsole is improved with contoured treads for smoother movement during turns.
Still embedded within the foam is a full-length curved carbon fibre plate that increases stiffness to provide a sensation of propulsion. The new shoe comes with 15 per cent more foam but with no additional weight.