Vista, CA (June 14, 2007) - Zoot Sports, a global leader in premium multisport apparel and wetsuits, introduces the first triathlon specific footwear line – the ULTRA Footwear Collection. Zoot Sports has a long tradition of creating innovative products for multisport athletes. This tradition began in 1983 when Christal Nylin created the first triathlon specific product - the Zoot Racesuit. In staying true to Zoot’s philosophy of “Finding Product Solutions for Multisport Athletes,” the Zoot Product Team reacted to consistent feedback from athletes about the problems with running footwear for triathlons.
After years of studying triathletes and further reinforced by athlete focus groups, Zoot Sports identified four inherent footwear problems specific to triathletes:
Speed of Entry - The need to get in and out of T2 as quickly as possible
Sockless Wear - Triathletes don’t want to take the time to put socks on
Water Retention - Studies have shown that traditional running shoes can gain an additional 30% of their weight during a race
Biomechanics - Athletes run differently after racing a bike
The solution to these problems is the ULTRA Line of Footwear. The initial ULTRA line of Zoot Footwear includes four models in both men’s and women’s styles: the ULTRA Race, an 8.4 ounce neutral racing shoe; the ULTRA TT, a 9.2 ounce neutral lightweight trainer; the ULTRA Tempo+, a 9.5 oz. dual-density midsole stability shoe; and the ULTRA Recovery Sandal, a fully customizable and cushioned sandal that helps reduce swelling and promotes a speedy recovery.
The ULTRA Footwear project is led by footwear industry veterans Aaron Azevedo (formerly with Saucony, Reebok, North Face), Bob Carroll (formerly with Saucony) and Mike Rouse (formerly with Mizuno, Brooks). “Over the past 25 years, there have been great performance breakthroughs in swimming and cycling that can be traced back to triathlon specific products, such as the first triathlon wetsuit and the tri-specific bike,“ notes Mike Rouse, “but no one has ever addressed the most crucial part of the race, the run, and we’re excited to bring this innovation to the industry and the athletes.”
Zoot has been aggressively testing the shoes and has successfully wear-tested them in competition at several Ironman 70.3 triathlons. Only two weeks ago, sub-2:40 marathoner and Zoot athlete, Kim Rouse, won her age group wearing the Zoot ULTRA Race shoes at the Honu Ironman 70.3.
“This product launch firmly positions Zoot Sports as the premium multisport brand,” said Brian Enge, CEO of Zoot Sports, “We are the only brand that can cover the athlete from head to toe, start to finish, and from training to race to recovery.”
The Zoot ULTRA Footwear line will be showcased at the Fleet Feet Summer Conference, Summer Outdoor Retailer, Interbike and The Running Event. The soft launch will be held in Kona at the Ironman World Championships this October. The ULTRA Footwear Line will be available to consumers for purchase at select ULTRA Dealers in March 2008.