What You Should Know.
- Theweighs 10.9 oz. (309 g) for US M9 / 9.8 oz (278 g) for US W8
- The classic Vibram Megagrip outsole grips the ground like no other
- Firm but comfortable ride
- Rival Evo Mafate 2 as Taylor in.
ALEX: The HOKA ONE ONE Mafate Speed 3 is professionally designed to perform on the hardest and most technical surfaces. From top to bottom, this shoe offers solid protection and support, while keeping your feet feeling great. The updated upper features welded overlays that keep the foot in place, and the addition of elastic in the forefoot allows for a wider foot.
TAYLOR : During last year’s quarantine, I was able to get outside more than most. With the trails only 600 yards from our front door, it was easy for me to get into the woods and away from people. I had to choose the HOKA ONE Evo Mafate 2 most often because it offers a good balance of comfort and performance in all mountain conditions. I hit it hard last year and loved every mile. Mafate Speed 3 is one for 2021.
ALEX: I’m a big supporter of HOOK. From the thoughtfulness and attention to detail they put into the design of their shoes to their commitment to justice and anti-racism, I couldn’t agree more.
My current technical trail is the Speedgoat 4. I noticed in the first phase that the mafs have a wider toebox than the speedgoat. Contoured KPU overlays combined with elastic material provide a secure fit without being tight or restricting movement. My toes were very happy in this shoe.
The Mafate has a dynamic, soft tongue for flexible comfort and a secure fit. I appreciated the discretion and minimalism. I often regret taking the tongue out of the other shoe, because it causes weird pressure points and friction at the front of the ankle. However, this is not the case with this shoe.
I tested the Mafat on a steep technical trail. After a few stops to try and fix my heel (more on that later), I was able to get a solid fit. I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of cushioning from the EVA midsole and the Vibram Megagrip Combo outsole.
One of the features of the Mafate is the outsole, which has deep, grippy 5 mm Vibram sipes. The grip is what is really nice about this shoe. It is excellent on roots, rocks, mud, ice and snow without sacrificing too much terrain feel. I cannot stress enough how confident I felt in this shoe in all conditions. Self-confidence is the key to a good race, especially on the trails.
TAYLOR : Some of the main attractions of the Evo Mafate 2 are included in the Mafate Speed 3.
The footrest is made of the same stack (35-31 mm) of double density EVA foam. Once you get used to the classic HOKA feel, it’s surprisingly durable, but this foam offers all-day comfort and the same level of protection. It is suitable for all paths and roads.
Although the focus is on the everyday runner, the Mafate Speed 3 can take a beating. Even at a moderate weight (11.4 ounces for a 10.5-year-old man), the acceleration is welcome, even on softer surfaces. The early meta rocker combines well with the EVA for a smooth, somewhat direct ride that excels when you’re running faster.
Dig deeper and Vibram Megagrip will show its pretty face. HOKA collects unique yet incredible cleat designs. This combination provides confidence on any surface. The 5mm Mafate Speed 3 spikes go well from paved surfaces to technical and rocky terrain. The track conditions didn’t matter either. The full-length, wide sole provides traction on dry, dusty surfaces as well as wet and muddy ones.
The biggest difference between Mafate’s two cousins is at the top. The double-layer mesh adds great value to the Mafate Speed 3. First of all, it reminds me of HOCA’s biggest publicity stunt to date, TenNin. I found the heel collar and collar toe fit well on both shoes. As a bonus, the top is made from recycled materials, which I’m always a fan of.
Mafat Shop – Men
Mafat – Women
ALEX: Mafat is not cheap at $170. For some, the price can be a big disadvantage. That said, I expect this shoe to last a while.
Initially, I had problems with my heel deformity. During my first run, I had to stop often to adjust the laces. Eventually I got a solid landing, it just took a few tries.
TAYLOR : It takes a long time to hack Mafate Speed 3, but I don’t know if I can keep it up that long. This shoe has everything going for it to be a good technical trail shoe for the long haul, with one exception. I found it too wide to take the technical relief seriously.
A wide midfoot leads to too much movement. Even on moderate trails, my feet rarely felt protected. A good fit is so important for a good shoe. Even the built-in tongue couldn’t hold my right leg.
Mafat Shop – Men
Mafat – Women
HOOK A MAFATH 3 Conclusion
ALEX: The HOKA ONE ONE Mafate Speed 3 offers plenty of footwear in a lightweight, protective package. With a supportive upper that also allows unrestricted movement, the Mafate offers great protection while allowing you to feel the trail under your feet.
Also, the Moroccan blue/saffron color reminds me of a spectacular sunset over Lake Superior. I’m a big fan of both.
TAYLOR : The HOKA ONE ONE Mafate Speed 3 is a rugged shoe, but not what it should be. A catch? Verification. Protection? Verification. Comfortable? Double check. Reliable attachment to the technical lines? Not so much. And that frustrates me. Foot protection in footwear requiring technical experience is of paramount importance. It’s like having a Jeep, but never being able to drive it off the beaten path.
You can purchase the HOKA ONE ONE Mafate Speed 3 for $170 from Running Warehouse (with free 2-day shipping and 90-day returns) via the store link below.
Mafat Shop – Men
Mafat – Women
Alex is an ultra runner who endures the long, cold winters of Minnesota. She works in the field of public health and enjoys a creative approach to the new health and environmental challenges people face.
Taylor Bodine is a trail and ultra runner who lives in Estes Park, Colorado with his wife and daughter. He and his wife enjoy walking the trails of Rocky Mountain National Park. When he’s not running, Taylor is a kindergarten and first grade teacher. Class, running coach and youth leader at his church.
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