Hellen Obiri Won the Boston Marathon Wearing 3D Printed On Shoes

By on April 24th, 2024 in news, Usage

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[Source: VoxelMatters]

The Cloudboom Strike LS is a prototype running shoe that could soon become commercially available.

On Athletic Club athlete Hellen Obiri defended her marathon crown in Boston, crossing the finish line in a time of 2:22:37 and becoming the first woman since 2005 to win Boston back-to-back. Obiri wore On‘s Cloudboom Strike LS, a prototype running shoe featuring a solid 3D printed upper.

The specialized portal The Running Club reported that Hellen Obiri wore the prototype of what will be the new On Cloudboom Strike. Officially presented in March at World Athletics in two versions, the On Cloudboom Strike LS Dev1 and the On Cloudboom Strike LS Dev1.2, it will be available to the general public starting from next year.

Cloudboom is the category of On that encompasses the super racing shoes, with premium compound and carbon fiber plate. However, these new Cloudboom Strike shoes appear quite different, completely revolutionized it seems, both in form and materials.

The 3D printed upper is characterized by the complete absence of laces, something never seen before in a racing shoe. It is made of a flexible plastic material, quite different from the microfiber present in many other high-end On models. It covers the foot like a true sock, becoming almost transparent and a bit wider around the ankle area.

The Running Club points out that it’s surprising to see almost no trace of the classic CloudTech that characterizes On models, barely hinted at in the midsole area under the heel, as already done albeit to a lesser extent with the Cloudboom Echo 3. The model worn by Obiri in Boston should be the Cloudboom Strike LS Dev1.2, which differs from the LS Dev1 for a lower height of the CloudTech. On seems set on taking it to market.

Also interesting is that On uses a carbon plate, called Speedboard, in its shoes which helps to increase the runner’s speed. Every On Speedboard is crafted to deliver a specific sensation. The material, shape, thickness and curve of the Speedboard change to provide different results based on different running needs – from comfort to all-out speed. It’s not fully clear how the Speedboard is made however On is based in Zurich, just like 9T Labs, which specializes in serial 3D printing of carbon-grade composites. 9T’s hybrid AFT technology can be used to produce structures that, according to the company, include “lightweight and strong shoe soles to increase speed”.

Obiri joined the On Athletics Club in 2022, relocating to Boulder, and began her transition from track racing to marathons under the guidance of Dathan Ritzenhein. Speaking on her return to Boston, Ritzenhein said:

“Returning to Boston as the defending champion, Hellen was under a lot of pressure to perform. She took this pressure and channeled it into her preparation and performance on the course. I couldn’t be more proud of her and her performance today. Hellen truly is a legend, and we are so happy to have her on the team.”

Obiri’s victory has solidified her status as one of the top female long-distance runners in the world. Her victory in Boston will surely put her in an excellent position to be selected to represent Kenya in the marathon distance at her fourth Games.

Under warmer-than-ideal weather conditions, 30,000 runners took to the start line of the 128th edition of the infamous marathon in Boston. With 19 elite women with personal bests under 2:23, and seven with personal bets under 2:19, the race for the Boston crown was well and truly on.

Read the rest of this story at VoxelMatters

By VoxelMatters

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