The Akyra is hands down the most structured shoe in my test. There’s a (by recent standards sizable) 9mm of drop and a two part, soft and sticky ‘Frixion XT mix’ sole, with deep, widely spaced lugs that do an excellent job of keeping you planted on rock, roots and grass, whether it’s wet or dry. There’s a ton of tech built into the non-membrane upper as well, but I won’t bore you with the names – suffice it to say the foot is held snugly in the shoe, with zero heel lift, and the built-in tongue gaiter helps to reduce debris. There’s a good rand to protect the toes, but the fit, as with most La Sportiva footwear, is slightly longer and thinner than others here. These are made for marathons and ultra-distance running, so you’re getting something that’s tough, well made and designed to protect your feet in extremis. As a consequence, these are heavier than the competition, drain more slowly but are confidence inspiring when cutting through every type of terrain. Weight around 680g per pair.
▶ Verdict: Tough, protective, professional ultra-running shoe. Grip factor 5/5.
▶ Best for: Medium to difficult terrain, off trail, long distances, racing.
Review by David Lintern @davidjlintern