The Supertrac RC is a very versatile shoe, it is cushioned enough for longer runs, and fast enough for short races. The outsole destroys loose mud, big rocks, and everything in between. This is a great choice for a shoe if you want to PR on your next trail race.
The Supertrac RC has a very sturdy upper.
It is made of a stiff, semi-breathable material. The upper feel almost indestructible. While I was running a race with hiking poles, I planted my sharp pole tip right on top of my foot. The upper was not damaged at all, yet my foot started bleeding.
The thick, stiff upper material kept my feet dry in the mud. No trail debris ever made it into this shoe.
The upper is smooth on the inside of the shoe. The upper material is so stiff, that when you are toeing off, the upper bunches up at the place where the shoe bends. This is a little irritating to my feet, but it is not too bad.
The Supertrac RC has a substantial plastic heel cup. The heel cup provides support and helps with the fit of the shoe. The heel collar is well padded.
This made the shoe comfortable even when the laces were tied very tightly. The heel area is lined with a synthetic moisture wicking material, to keep your feet dry as they sweat.
Tongue & Laces
The Supertrac RC has thin flat laces. They do not stretch at all. This makes the fit of the shoe less adaptive.
I find that I have to tie the laces very tightly to get a secure fit. The Supertrac RC has a thin plastic tongue. This tongue is not padded enough, considering that I have to tie the laces so tightly.
The Supertrac RC has a very strange insole.
The material sticks to your feet, which is good while you're running, but it makes sliding your foot into the shoe rather challenging. I always bunch up the insole while putting on the shoe.
The Supertrac RC has a straight fit.
The shoe has a little bit of a narrow platform, however, this is favorable when you are trying to go fast. The toe box has a wider than average fit. I really liked this feature because it allows my big toe to stay straight so that I could more powerfully push off.
The midfoot and heel areas have a narrower fit. This makes the shoe feel more secure, so I can fly down technical downhills without slipping.
My favorite part of any trail shoe is the toe bumper.
The Supertrac RC has a toe bumper that is made from a small piece of the outsole rubber and a large plastic toe cap. The toe bumper is very sturdy. My feet can barely feel it when I kick a brick wall or a stone on the trail.
Underneath the weird insole, is a very hard Strobel board, and a layer of responsive foam.
The Supertrac RC has firm cushioning. The cushioning dampens the feel of rocks and roots that you step on, but it does not provide as much cushioning as I would like. I would like the shoe better if the midsole was slightly softer.
That being said, the midsole material does make you go faster. It increases your turnover, and it does not drain energy from you.
The shoe is neither stiff nor flexible. It is somewhere in between. The shoe is not stiff enough to give you a noticeable pop at the toe-off stage of the gait cycle, but it is also too stiff to promote natural running.
A Strobel board is a hard piece of plastic between the midsole foam and the sockliner. The Strobel board stops your foot from sinking into the midsole cushioning.
The Strobel board effectively moves the epicenter of the midsole compression from just underneath your foot, to just above the outsole. The Strobel board causes your foot and lower leg muscles to work harder, but as a result, you go faster.
Removing the Strobel board makes the shoe more comfortable, because your feet and lower legs do not have to work as hard, but you can't sustain as fast of a pace.
The Supertrac RC has a 5-millimeter heel to toe offset. This makes the shoe better for midfoot and forefoot strikers.
The shoe does have enough cushioning to accommodate heel strikers, but it is definitely more comfortable if you forefoot strike. Lower offset shoes have slower transitions from heel strike to toe-off.
That being said, this is still a fast shoe that a heel striker could race in.
The outsole is the best part of the Supertrac RC is the outsole.
The entire outsole is covered in a layer of sticky rubber.
Protruding from this sheet of rubber are widely spaced, long and aggressive, multi-directional lugs. These lugs provide great traction on all types of trails, while both ascending, and descending.
The forefoot lugs form concentric circles, with the inversion center located right under the ball of your foot. This makes the shoe better for neutral runners.
Neutral runners will apply the most pressure on the ground underneath the ball of their foot, which makes the lug design the most effective because the lugs circulate around the ball of your foot.
The outsole is very durable. In my 80 miles of testing, there are minimal signs of wear.
There is no rock guard on the outsole of this shoe, however, the thick rubber outsole, and the midsole foam absorb the impacts from all sharp objects. A rock plate would just add weight to this shoe.
I pretty much would suggest it for anything but slow jogging. I would recommend this shoe for any race distance up to 50 miles. I would prefer a little bit more cushion for a 100-mile race.
The Supertrac RC is more geared towards forefoot strikers, but any type of neutral runner can enjoy running in this shoe.
This shoe can handle any trail, from groomed trails to the most technical of trails. I do not recommend this shoe for roads. The outsole is too aggressive, which makes it uncomfortable on roads. Roads also wear down the lugs too quickly.
-0.5 indicates that you should buy 0.5 sizes smaller in a different shoe; +0.5 indicates that you should buy 0.5 sizes larger in a different shoe; = indicates that you should buy the same size in both shoes.
Scott Supertrac RC VS. Hoka One One Speed Instinct 2
The Speed Instinct 2 and Supertrac RC weigh about the same amount. Both shoes have about the same stack height, however, the Speed Instinct has softer midsole foam, and therefore a more cushioned ride.
Both shoes are fast trail racing shoes.
The Speed instinct is fast because of the firmer forefoot, and stiff ride. The Supertrac RC has much more aggressive lugs and therefore has better traction. The Speed Instinct has a more comfortable upper.
Scott Supertrac RC VS. La Sportiva Helios SR
The Helios SR is about an ounce lighter than the Supertrac RC. Both shoes are equally fast. The Helios SR is more minimal and more flexible; The Supertrac RC is slightly higher profile but has a faster ride.
The Helios SR has a more comfortable, snug upper. The Helios SR is better for shorter races, whereas the Supertrac RC is better for longer races.
Scott Supertrac RC VS. Brooks Mazama
The Mazama is a very stiff and fast shoe.The Mazama has minimal cushioning, so it is only good for shorter distances.
The Mazama weighs about half an ounce more than the Supertrac RC. Both shoes have equally protective uppers and have equally strong traction. The toe bumper on the Mazama is even more sturdy than the toe bumper on the Supertrac RC.
Scott Supertrac RC VS. Scott Kinabalu RC
The Supertrac RC is a higher profile version of the Kinabalu RC.
The Supertrac RC has more midsole cushioning, and more aggressive lugs. The Kinabalu RC is actually an ounce heavier than the Supertrac RC. For that reason, I much prefer the Supertrac RC. Why carry extra weight without extra protection?
It has an amazing outsole, decent cushioning, and a sturdy upper that needs some improvement. I take off points because the upper is a little bit uncomfortable, and not breathable. The midsole could also be improved to have a little bit of a softer ride.
Overall, the Supertrac RC is versatile trail racing shoe, capable of crushing any PR from the 5k to 50 miles.