Having ran in previous incarnations of the Peregrine I was pretty excited to get hold of a pair of the new Saucony Peregrine 8. My first introduction in to the Peregrines was with version 5, this was my shoe of choice for the Hardmoors 55 mile ultra back in 2015 and overall I really liked the shoe but did have issues, mainly with space in the toe box. I did enjoy it enough to use versions 6 and 7 both of which I felt improved in some way year upon year. Which leads us to the 2018 version 8 of the Peregrine…. Will I like it as much as version 7? Only one way to find out and that is to get it on the trails.
At the time of this article I have clocked up around 70 miles in the shoe mainly running on boggy North Yorkshire moors and trails but also taking them on to some country roads to test the comfort on surfaces a little harder than soft, winter moorland.
Flexibility, flexibility, flexibility… this has to be the biggest difference for me from the previous versions. The rock plate from version 7 has been removed which in turn improves the flexibility of the shoe no end. Being somebody who likes as close to zero drop as possible and a natural feel this is only a positive in my eyes.
The 6mm lugs are pretty aggressive and felt great going up and downhill on what was pretty boggy and sticky mud. The weather at the time was very, very muddy and the Saucony Koa might have been a better choice of shoe but I was impressed at how the Peregrine not only handled the mud but also found the lugs discarded the mud really quickly too. This meant the mud did not build up on the sole at all.
After leaving the boggy trails I then headed up on to some gravel tracks, this is where the Peregrine 8 came in to its own, the ground feel without the rock plate was excellent and in no way did it cause any discomfort to my foot and the grip was as good as any shoe I have used in the past.
The Peregrine uses Sauconys EverRun cushioning which I love from my runs with the Kinvaras so I knew this was going to be good and now that rock plate has gone I can definetly say the Peregrines are the Kinvara of the trail, as mentioned previously the lugs on the outsole are an aggressive 6mm.
The drop is 4mm withHeel Stack Height: 24.5mm, certainly enough cushioning for a long ultra in my opinion.
The shoe also comes with something called the ProLock lacing system which felt pretty good once I had the shoe tied tight enough.
A large toe box is something which is a must for me in any running shoe and the toe box space was in these was roomy and gave my toes more than enough room to splay out… a big thumbs up here!
The mens Peregrine comes in two colours, ‘Black, Denim and Copper’ and ‘Black, Grey and Blue’.
The pair I used were the ‘Black, Grey and Blue’ version which I think look really nice however since using the shoe I have now seen up close the ‘Black, Denim and Copper’ version which for me are the better looking shoe and if choosing again I would go for those.
The womens version comes in ‘ViZiRed, Black and Grey’ and ‘Blue, Denim and Copper’ again now I have seen them both in the flesh I was drawn more towards to Denim version.
Grip: A slight improvement on what was in my opinion a great outsole.
Feel: The biggest change from the last version and something I absolutely love.
Fit: Sizing was similar to the last version, I am a size 11 in both the 7 and 8.
Looks: Again a big improvement from the last version, a very good looking shoe.
Will I be using the Peregrine 8 for 2018? An unequivocal YES, I can’t wait for the spring and summer months to come around as this is when the Peregrines will really show their true colours.
I can’t fault the comfort and grip and am really finding it hard to find anything I would improve on. Last years version of the shoe for me was already one of my favourite trail shoes but now with the added flexibility this really is a brilliant trail shoe fit for all distances.