On Cloudracer

6.5
6.5 score
[Editors rating (8.0) + Users rating (2.0)] / 2 = Runnerclick score (6.5)/10

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Editor rating: 8.0 / 10
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On Cloudracer Review Facts
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When you think about household name running shoe brands, who comes to mind? Brooks, Asics, Mizuno… On? While some of you might not be familiar with their name, the Swiss company’s running shoes are absolutely worth your time and attention. So look alive, runners, here come the Cloudracers.

The first thing you notice about On’s Cloudracer Running Shoe is its simple, yet eye-catching color and design. These running shoes come in a snappy silver/lime or silver/orange combination. They are perfect for anyone looking for a shoe that is sleek and not too flamboyant. And of course, if you’re a believer in color coordinating and the effects a great-looking running outfit can have on your confidence during a race, you will adore the simple color palette that the Cloudracer has to offer—either color scheme is sure to complement your favorite race-day ensemble.

The standout features of the Cloudracer shoe are the little rubber pods that line the outsole of the shoe. The Cloudracer shoes feature On’s patented CloudTec© rubber sole “pods” that flatten when you run, allowing for a springy, energetic stride. The CloudTec© pods also boast a unique honeycomb slip pattern for added stability both vertically and horizontally. The impact support from this shoe isn’t soft and pillowy. It is bouncier, with more support in the back than the mid-sole and front. Perfect for runners who love an energetic stride.

The Cloudracer Running Shoe is great for anyone wanting a nice, middle-of-the-road racing shoe without too much bulk.

 

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Breathable upper mesh design
  • Materials & design help shed water (helpful for triathlons)
  • Lightly padded ankle collar
  • Flexible feel
  • CloudTec© pods for a springy stride
  • Low to the ground, low drop (5mm)
Cons
  • Heavy for a racing shoe (7 oz)
  • Price
  • Narrow fit
  • Low mileage expectations
Outsole
Outsole

Outsole

The outsole of the On Cloudracer shoe is enough to make anyone do a double-take. What on earth are those things? They are what truly sets this shoe apart. The CloudTec© collapsable outsole pods, distributed along the outsole of the shoe, add an eye-catching, unique element that you won’t find from any other running shoe brand. These collapsable pods are designed specifically for speed, and their honeycomb slip pattern creates vertical and horizontal stability.
Midsole
Midsole

Midsole

The Cloudracer’s slim, light, springy midsole offers support without a lot of the bulk. The Cloudracers feature a high-grade EVA midsole material, with newer models boasting a slim, minimal-weight Speedboard (plastic material designed specifically to encourage a smooth gait throughout your run). The midsole provides adequate support, but nothing specifically for those seeking arch support.
Upper
Upper

Upper

The skeleton design of the Cloudracer is borrowed from taping methods that a lot of runners and athletes use. The upper portion of the Cloudracer is light—so light, in fact, that you can see through the mesh! For some, this may not be considered durable enough and may indeed wear down with time. However, runners who have issues with bulky, heavy, or constrictive upper shoe materials will rejoice in the barely-there feel of the Cloudracer’s upper mesh. If slipping shoe tongues drive you insane, the Cloudracer features a light, perforated tongue with special stitching to hold it in place. No more mid-race adjustments! You can focus on your performance instead.
Weight
Weight

Weight

If you are a competitive runner that focuses on speed, you might find these self-proclaimed racing shoes a little bit on the heavier side. It’s true, the CloudTec© collapsable pods do add some weight. The weight of the Cloudracer running shoe is one of the features that might drive competitive racers to seek other footwear. It is heavy for a racing shoe; the women’s model weighs 7 oz and the men’s model weighs. If you are a back-of-the-pack runner and speed is not a concern for you, it may actually feel lighter than some of the other shoes on the market.
Breathability
Breathability

Breathability

The Cloudracer running shoe’s breathability is one of its top selling points. The lightweight air mesh and perforated tongue allow for peak comfort—sweaty feet, be gone. The breathable design will not add excess sweat and discomfort to your already intense workout session. This shoe is actually great at shedding water, so you might find yourself even more comfortable than usual.
Comfort
Comfort

Comfort

If you are looking for a pillow-soft cushion, you won’t find it with the On Cloudracer. That’s not to say that they are uncomfortable—they are definitely not. But these running shoes are low to the ground, which doesn’t leave a lot of room, or need, for padding and cushioning. But the light mesh upper and springy outsole make for a comfortable, easy ride. The breathability and skeleton design add to the comfort factor for this shoe, and blister hotspots aren’t an issue for this minimalist running shoe.
Style
Style

Style

For runners looking for a simpler color palette, the Cloudracer deserves your attention. Its stylish, sleek design is one of the most striking things about the shoe. They are available in a silver/lime or silver/orange combination, and are sure to make a statement without making your feet look like a tropical bird. The CloudTec© pods lining the bottom of the shoe are certainly unique and will be sure to get other runners talking, wondering what exactly are on the bottoms of your shoes!
Durability
Durability

Durability

These shoes come with an imprint inside informing the buyer that the shoes have a life expectancy of about 222 km (or approximately 137 miles). The life expectancy of the Cloudracer is not quite as long as some of the more durable running shoes on the market. You will want to make friends with your local running store or delivery person—you are likely to see them more often if you fall in love with the Cloudracer running shoes. The stitching and materials are tough and shed water like a champ, meaning getting them wet is not a big wear-and-tear issue, but the Cloudracer running shoe’s minimalist design, slim midsole, and light materials make these shoes less durable than some of the other shoes on the market designed specifically for the long haul.
Protection
Protection

Protection

With a light, breathable design, you are going to sacrifice some toughness and protection. The Cloudracer is a minimalist running shoe, so you don’t want to go crashing through thick brush or on trails in these shoes. But the CloudTec© pods do create some springy protection along the bottom, and the padded ankle collar specifically targets the Achilles heel—giving you a layer of protection there as well. This is great if your Achilles is injury-prone. The design was inspired by taping methods used by runners and athletes, so if you are a K-Tape fan, you will find this adds light protection to your feet in all the right ways.
Responsiveness
Responsiveness

Responsiveness

The CloudTec© pods and sleek, skeleton design of the shoe translate to a springy and responsive ride. Many runners complain about problems with their feet slipping around on the inside of their shoes while they run, but the Cloudracer running shoe features a non-slip lining that eliminates this issue, helping to keep your foot in place inside the shoe so you can focus on speed and performance. The Cloudracers will respond to your every step and turn, so don’t be afraid to let loose and do some speedwork!
Support
Support

Support

Runners looking for neutral, but comfortable support will find it in the Cloudracers. The pods on the bottom of the shoe add a firm, supportive element—but be advised, this is not a shoe that is designed specifically for stability. The skeleton design, inspired by the way runners tape their feet and ankles for injuries, gives light support and is not at all restrictive. Runners looking for truly supportive shoes should seek their perfect fit elsewhere.
Terrain
Terrain

Terrain

The Cloudracer’s outer, breathable mesh design sheds water quite well, so you might be tempted to take it out for a little run on your favorite trail, but be advised: These are not trail running shoes! Banish the temptation to race Mother Nature in your Cloudracer shoes and stick to the tamer, flatter terrain. The CloudTec© pods are great for speedwork on flatter surfaces, allowing you to truly push your limits and work on your speed. The Cloudracers perform best on treadmills, sidewalks, tracks, paved roads, and smooth surfaces. If you simply must hit those rugged trails, you should be looking specifically for shoes meant for trail running.
Price
Price

Price

One of the cons of this shoe is the sticker shock that may hit you at the register when you buy them. You can expect to shell out around $130 for the Cloudracer. Considering its low mileage life expectancy, this shoe doesn’t offer the best bang for your buck. If you’re on a budget, or like a great deal, you may set your sights elsewhere. If you like to try new shoes and are unconcerned with price, give these running shoes a shot!
Traction
Traction

Traction

The Cloudracer’s CloudTec© pods do add a traction element to the shoe, and the unique honeycomb slip pattern creates an additional element of grip—supporting you both vertically and horizontally as you zoom toward your goals. But despite this honeycomb pattern along the bottom of the CloudTec© collapsable pods, some claim that they are a little bit slippery in wet conditions. While you should always be mindful of your surfaces when it’s raining, this might be considered a negative selling point for some runners, especially those that live in wetter climates.
Flexibility
Flexibility

Flexibility

Runners have to be flexible in a lot of ways (body flexibility, schedule flexibility… You get the point!), so a flexible shoe is an absolute must. The Cloudracer’s lightweight outer design allows for a nice, flexible feel. This is definitely not a motion control shoe. If you are a runner that needs a stiff, structured shoe, you likely will not rave about the Cloudracer. But if your foot craves the freedom a flexible shoe gives you, you will absolutely adore the Cloudracers’ light, flexible feel.
Stability
Stability

Stability

The CloudTec© pods along the bottom of the shoe allow for a springy, yet stable ride. This isn’t a shoe for anyone looking for specific stability control like the Mizuno Wave Rider or the Brooks Addiction, but as a good middle-of-the-road shoe, you won’t find yourself wobbling or having troubles staying firmly planted while you run. It’s a reliable, stable shoe.
Drop
Drop

Drop

The On Cloudracer is low to the ground and features a 5mm drop, allowing for a nice, quick, organic running experience. This shoe is marketed as a racing shoe, and its drop and low-to-the-ground design is good for novice speedwork.
Key Features
Key Features

Key Features

- CloudTec© pods on the outsole of the shoe allow for a springy, energetic run
- Breathable mesh top for maximum comfort
- Perforated, comfortable tongue that stays in place
- Low-to-the-ground shoe for a minimalist, natural running feel
- Attractive and stylish color scheme
Bottom Line

Bottom Line

The Cloudracer running shoe is worth a look for anyone hunting for a great, neutral, minimalist running shoe. The CloudTec© pods alone are intriguing enough to take these running shoes for a spin. The Cloudracer’s skeleton design and breathable mesh will make running a dream, especially on hot summer days. The shoes do run a bit narrow, so size half to a full size larger than you normally would, especially if you like a roomier toe box. If you are a high-mileage runner who really wears their shoes out quickly, you may be in for a more frequent buying experience with these. The Cloudracers come with a note inside stating they’re recommended for about 222 km (that’s about 137 miles).