We live in an age in which social media is a dominant and game-changing force in almost all industries, and sneakers is no exception. Discussion and selling groups on Facebook, dedicated sneaker release accounts on Instagram/Twitter and more have all risen to prominence over the last few years, with many making important ties with major brands to create a more in-tune industry on the whole. It wasn’t going to be long before a tangible product was produced by a major sneaker brand with the help of a social media-based entity, and that day has finally arrived. Saucony, arguably one of the most aware and responsive sneaker brands around at the moment, has teamed up with the popular social media presence Saucony Sneaks, and the result is the GRID 9000 “Sparring With Saucony Sneaks”.
As can be gathered from the promo shots and title of the shoe, sparring, in the sense of a boxing match, has served as a primary influence for the colourway. The term sparring was also used as a metaphor, referring to the idea of putting your experiences, knowledge and such into practice to try and achieve something great – and it’s safe to say that, in doing so, Saucony Sneaks has produced an incredible shoe to kick off what could be an incredible year for Saucony. If this is a sign of what Facebook groups can produce when collaborating with a major sneaker brand, we want more!
The shoe itself exceeds expectations on all fronts. The materials are as amazing as ever, with almost the whole upper coming in a buttery soft suede. Accenting that are mesh on the toebox which vastly improves breathability, and the classic neoprene ankle collar which also forms the tongue to create a sock-like fit. Saucony’s three dots logo, appearing on the lateral and medial sides of the shoe, come in a matte gold, naturally representative of the belts won when boxing. The colour scheme is incredible, with a heavy colour blocked upper and midsole to match. The contrasting red and royal blue represent the red and blue corners of boxing matches, providing a great backdrop for Saucony’s gold logos. On the tongue we see a contrasting red/blue “S” logo, and aside from that there is very little branding on the shoe – the colourway itself is evidently the focal point. On the midsole we see red clashing with blue again (with a gorgeous speckle incorporated too) before transitioning into a neutral white at the front of the shoe, and the outsole comes in a gum brown.
All of the GRID 9000 mod-cons still remain, with GRID technology, woven hytrel filaments that absorb and deflect impact throughout the midsole, sitting nicely in the heel area. That, combined with the EVA cushioned midsole, makes the shoe incredibly comfortable – it’s easy to see why this was one of the most popular running shoes of the ’90s! As has been mentioned already, the fit of the shoe is on point too, thanks to a combined ankle collar/tongue that provides a one-piece construction sock-like fit, and the mesh area on the toebox makes the shoes much more breathable. So it’s safe to say these shoes perform just as good as they look, you could probably use them for boxing!
The Saucony Sneaks x Saucony GRID 9000 “Sparring With Saucony Sneaks” is releasing here at Attitude Inc. via a raffle. There are still places to be won, so if you’re interested, hit us up on our Instagram which you can find here. The rest of the Saucony range is available here, and in our Colchester and Ipswich stores. It’s unlikely that this GRID 9000 will even make it to our stores, though!