I’ll discuss the Nike Zoom Powercat in this review which is basically an upgrade from the Nike Zoom Superfly R2. I’ll save the Nike “Shawn Crawford” Monsterfly and Nike Mawler for another review.
The Zoom Powercat is much lighter than the Superfly R2 with the removal of the midfoot straps shaving a FULL ounce from 7.6 oz to 6.6 oz. (1 ounce = 28 grams, and 7 oz is about 200 grams which is the holy grail “magic number” for shoes)
The Zoom Powercat were made available to the public in 2006 after Asafa Powell test drove them back in 2005. As you know, Asafa Powell introduced the Zoom Aerofly in Beijing 2008 and those spikes MAY be available to the public in 2011.
The Powercat was originally priced at $160 USD (MSRP), but you can find them for just under $100 at the time of this writing. The Superfly R2 are at clearance prices if you can find your size.
This spike is designed for the sprints between 60 – 400 meters, but you could wear them up to 600 meters.
The Powercat has one major difference over the Adidas Powersprint 2 and that is the spike plate. It has 8 pins with 4 immediately at the ball of the foot as you claw down on the track. It also has no lace cover.
The Powercat comes with removable 1/4" pyramid spikes (whereas the Nike Monsterfly and Mawler come with non-removable 7mm Christmas tree spikes). If you prefer the Christmas Tree spikes, see my previous article on How to Choose Spike Pins and Needles. NOTE: The Superfly R2 come with Christmas Tree spikes.
The spike plate is a full length one, which may make the shoe a bit stiff depending on your leg power and your body weight. I find that after 1 season of training in spikes with a full length spike plate, I crack them on a hot summer day. (I am at least 185 lbs or 84 kg on a good day) So you may want to reserve a pair for racing only.
Always carry 2 pairs of spikes to a track meet and an extra pair of shorts! And please try on your bodysuit before you race (name withheld to protect the innocent)
If you have Achilles problems, I would suggest a less stiff spike plate as a stiffer spike will create more torque on your Achilles. And therefore more prone to injury.
The Powercat is available in a variety of colours. Check the Eastbay website for details and availability in your shoe size. Below is just a sample: