Brooks Launch, a series known because of its performance-driven design, continues to satisfy neutral runners with its newest version – the Brooks Launch 5.
A few enhancements have been made in the cushioning and outsole configuration of the shoe, but these improvements are not obvious especially if you don’t own any version of the Launch series.
The major update is in the upper of the Brooks Launch 5. The shoe made use of an engineered mesh that is strategically designed for a more breathable foot coverage. The stretchy material also provides the foot a sock-like fit.
Technical Details of the Brooks Launch 5
The upper of the Brook Launch 5 features a new engineered mesh that is lightweight and flexible. The mesh material keeps the foot well-ventilated. It wraps the foot comfortably and delivers an adaptive fit.
Along with the mesh upper is the internal bootie construction. It provides the much-needed all-day comfort for long-distance runs.
The lacing system is the same as the ones that were used in the Launch 4. The laces are semi-round with a precise length, and there are extra eyelets to give the ankle a more secure lockdown.
The Launch 5 also comes in well-padded heel collar and tongue. The collar and tongue were designed to give added foot security and comfort.
In the midsole of the Launch 5 are the notable Brooks technologies – the BioMoGo DNA midsole and the Midfoot Transition Zone.
The BioMoGo DNA midsole technology is a single-piece cushioning that delivers a responsive ride. It feels very lightweight and adapts to the natural movement of the foot for a more efficient gait cycle.
On the other hand, the Midfoot Transition Zone offers a smoother heel-to-toe transition.
For added underfoot cushioning and an enhanced fit, the shoe has a removable sock liner. It is made from lightweight BioMoGo foam and has a moisture-wicking capacity to keep the foot dry and odor-free.
The Brooks Launch 5 utilizes the HPR Plus rubber in its sole unit. It is a durable rubber material that is specifically placed in the heel and toe. It gives the sole unit the sturdiness needed for road running.
In the forefoot area is the blown rubber material. It is a soft rubber that gives flexibility and added traction on the road.
The flex grooves are also visible in the outsole configuration. It gives maximum flexibility without affecting the cushioning of the shoe.
The overall outsole design of the Launch 5 offers reliable traction on paved surfaces. It also provides decent grip on slightly wet running conditions.
The Launch 5 fits true to size and is available in standard medium width for both men’s and women’s versions.
I wear a size 7 and the shoe fits perfectly. It provides a secure and comfortable foot lockdown from the heel to forefoot. The toe box is roomy just like the Brooks Launch 5.
Lastly, the internal bootie construction offers a soft, comfortable in-shoe feel.
Comfort & Breathability
The Brooks Launch 5 provides high-level of comfort and breathability.
The engineered mesh provides the foot a breathable coverage, keeping the foot cool and dry even on long runs. Also, the tongue and collar are generously padded.
These work well with the soft internal bootie construction that is designed for an all-day comfort.
The comfort and breathability of the Launch 5 are comparable to the Nike Air Zoom Winflo 4.
The Winflo 4 features a smooth, breathable mesh upper for a well-ventilated ride. It also has a slightly padded collar and smooth lining for a more satisfying in-shoe feel.
Ride Quality of the Brooks Launch 5
When it comes to overall ride quality, the Launch 5 won’t disappoint.
Thanks to the BioMoGo DNA midsole that provides responsiveness and durable underfoot cushioning. The cushioning is just right for my liking – not too soft and not too firm.
The Midfoot Transition Zone also provides a smoother heel-to-toe transition.
The flex grooves have also contributed to the overall performance of the shoe. The grooves efficiently bend as my foot moves to different directions.
Because of the light construction of the Brooks Launch 5, it feels so fast and disappears on my foot while running miles after miles.
I was a bit disappointed with the shoe’s durability.
I was expecting every aspect of it to be durable. However, after running a few miles, I noticed that the rubber material in the heel area started to show some wears.
- Breathable foot coverage
- Responsive & flexible ride
- Reliable traction on the road
- Great in-shoe feel
- Durable underfoot cushioning
- Lightweight design
- Sole unit ripped earlier than expected
Overall Impression of the Brooks Launch 5
Though it provides a fast and springy ride, the shoe is not durable enough for long-term use. Weighing 212.6 grams for women’s, the overall performance of the Brooks Launch 5 is undeniably satisfying.