Summary

We spent 9.1 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what runners think:

9 reasons to buy

  • The upper unit of the New Balance Vazee Pace felt like a glove, according to those who tried it.
  • The fabrics of the upper were able to allow air into the foot chamber, and runners appreciated how it kept their feet cool and dry throughout their activities.
  • According to a user, the interior fabrics were smooth and it didn’t cause any discomfort or irritation.
  • The toe box was slightly roomy, but the rest of the cover system felt snug and secure, wrote a number of testers.
  • Many runners described this model as ‘comfortable’.
  • A reviewer wrote that the shoelaces felt rich, high-tech and stretchy; it didn’t unravel by themselves even after many miles of running.
  • This shoe was adequately lightweight for a lot of runners.
  • Users commented that the underfoot platform was reliable when it came to its capability to cushion the foot.
  • Based on many reviews, the outsole’s traction capability was dependable.

2 reasons not to buy

  • The outsole’s treads wore out on a number of testers, reducing the quality of surface traction.
  • A few runners noted that it was uncomfortably narrow and restricting.

Bottom line

The New Balance Vazee Pace was enjoyed by many of its testers. They were able to experience and comment about the efficient mid-sole, the comfortable upper unit, and the precise outsole rubber. But there were those who didn’t like the quality of the tread because it wore off too quickly on them, and the fit wasn’t as agreeable to others. Still, this neutral shoe became a popular choice among neutral runners.

Facts

Rankings

A top rated Road running shoe
A popular pick
It has never been more popular than this May

Expert Reviews

83 / 100 based on 19 expert reviews

  • 98 / 100 | Believe in the Run | | Level 5 expert

    So far, this is my pick for new shoe of the year, and this has been a great year for running shoes. I can’t imagine any shoe will be able to take its place.

  • 90 / 100 | Gearist | | Level 5 expert

    On its own, the Vazee Pace is a lightweight shoe with excellent ground feel and good balance. When I want to go slow on a recovery day I don’t feel like I’m being pushed to floor it but when the time comes to turn on the speed, this shoe can fly.

  • 90 / 100 | Running Competitor | | Level 5 expert

    They are very responsive, and put loads of energy in your stride, making them very fun to run in.

  • 85 / 100 | Gearist | | Level 5 expert

    This is a lightweight, responsive and durable shoe that can go anywhere from a 5k to a marathon and possibly even beyond.

  • 80 / 100 | Running Shoes Guru | | Level 5 expert

    The New Balance Vazee Pace is a lightweight trainer that pushes you along on your run. There is enough cushioning to get the job done, but no more.

  • 80 / 100 | Runner's World | Level 5 expert

    The upper, a simple mesh with thin welded overlays for support, holds the foot nicely without binding anywhere.

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  • The Vazee collection of shoes introduces another shoe with more than enough cushioning for high-mileage trainings and ultra-long runs in a lightweight package that makes race days also as an ideal time to use the Vazee Pace.
  • In the Vazee Pace, New Balance brings back the REVlite midsole for its lightweight and snappy ride. It brings an element of firmness in the sole that is needed for powerful takeoffs without putting stress on the foot with each stride in a very long run.
  • For a shoe that is built for speed training or racing, New Balance gave the shoe a little bump on the medial side for better arch support. The support is not jarring and is designed to really come to the fore when runners go for marathons or longer runs. It is effective, but never gets in the way of neutral runners.
  • New Balance’s drive of providing fast and athletic shoes is evident by the kind of upper it offers in the Vazee Pace. The upper hugs the foot in support and comfort. There is an excellent lockdown feel as well delivered by the deconstructed heel counter and the synthetic overlays.

The fit of the Vazee Pace is snug in the rear going to the midfoot. With an Oblique Toe Box design, the forefoot has adequate space for the toes to splay. A large number of runners prefer this type of fit in their shoes. New Balance uses medium and wide as the available widths of this shoe. Sizing is standard with options 6 to 15 for the men’s and 5 to 11 for the women’s.


The outsole is a full contact platform from the front to the back. New Balance designs the outsole with huge chunks of rubber called pods that effortlessly tie up with the deep flex grooves for exceptional flexibility in the forefoot and part of the midfoot. Carbon rubber is used on the heel and near the tips of the forefoot for durability while blown rubber covers most of the outsole for enhanced traction. The blown rubber material is also utilized in the outsole of the Vazee Pace 2 and other popular New Balance running footwear.


To give that necessary pop for quick-paced runs, New Balance uses its patented REVlite midsole. It is very light and extremely durable. While the cushioning is adequate for ultra-long runs, it does not sag like many of the soft foams for a more energizing stride. The one-piece REVlite foam makes the transition better from the heel to the toes. The flex grooves in the outsole are the same pattern used in the midsole for excellent flexibility.


Probably the most minimal part of the shoe is the upper. It uses mainly two kinds of mesh. The one in the front has wider holes, which makes breathability excellent, while the midfoot part to the heel is a bit close for more structure and support. The cleatie-style and seamless construction also deliver adequate midfoot hold through the welded synthetic overlays. Giving support in the rear section is the deconstructed heel counter. The counter is a bit pliable, which still helps with the wraparound fit and great comfort. Running without socks is made possible by the irritation-free interior. For enhanced comfort and cushioning, a traditional sockliner is utilized. Flat laces are used to give runner’s the fit they want most.

Author
Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.

jens@runrepeat.com