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Gear and Technology

The best track and field spikes for every distance

The best track and field spikes for every distance
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In a track and field race, every second counts—and the right shoes can make all the difference. Track spikes, designed to provide maximum traction and stability on the track, are essential for athletes looking to optimize their performance across various event distances. Let’s explore the best track spikes for sprinting, mid-distance, and cross-country runs, so you’re well-equipped to chase down a new PR on race day.

Every track event has unique demands, requiring spikes that can keep pace. Sprints, such as the 100m and 200m dashes, command explosive speed and power, making spikes with a stiff plate for maximum energy return and a snug fit essential. Middle-distance races like the 400m and 800m balance speed with endurance, necessitating shoes that offer a blend of flexibility, support, and comfort. For distance runners and cross-country athletes, endurance is key; their spikes prioritize a more cushioned sole for sustained comfort and a durable yet aggressive spike plate to tackle varied terrain.

Ready to step into the fast lane? Check out our top contenders below, from all-out sprinters to cross-country spikes that go the distance.

QW-K v4: Blaze through sprints 400m and  shorter

QW-K v4: Blaze through sprints 400m and shorter

Distance: 100m – 400m

Spikes: 7

Built for top speed, the QW-K v4 racing shoe features an aggressive spike plate and internal nylon plate that maximizes the rigidity-to-weight ratio, providing solid support and efficient energy transfer during sprints without weighing you down. The 7-spike configuration is designed to deliver optimal traction for events 400m and shorter, while the engineered mesh upper provides a sock-like fit for powerful toe-offs, so you can race to victory with ease.

ELMN8 7: Dominate the track in 400m 1,600m races

ELMN8 7: Dominate the track in 400m – 1,600m races

Distance: 400m – 1,600m

Spikes: 6

The fast and propulsive ELMN8 7 track spike offers lightweight traction and responsive cushioning to help you stay nimble in mid-distance races. The full-length carbon fiber propulsion plate delivers optimized energy return for quick strides, while the Xelight™ forefoot spike plate provides grip for a forceful toe-off. The nitrogen-infused DNA midsole offers optimal cushioning and smooth transitions, so you can race in comfort.

Hyperion Elite MD: Pull ahead of the pack in middistance runs

Hyperion Elite MD: Pull ahead of the pack in mid-distance runs

Distance: 800m – 1,500m

Spikes: 6

With springy, just-right cushioning and an ultralight carbon fiber propulsion plate to help power you forward, the Hyperion Elite MD keeps you poised to pounce in mid-distance races. The flexible SpeedVault Race Plate and the toothy 6-pin spike plate team up to deliver exceptional grip and powerful toe-offs, while nitrogen-infused DNA FLASH v2 cushioning provides a barely-there feel, keeping you light on your feet from start to finish.

Hyperion Elite LD: Race to the limit in longdistance event

Hyperion Elite LD: Race to the limit in long-distance events

Distance: 1,500m – 10,000m

Spikes: 6

Developed in partnership with pro athletes, the Hyperion Elite LD is your performance partner for longer-distance track races. Springy and responsive DNA FLASH v2 cushioning offers quick transitions, while a light and flexible full-length carbon composite plate delivers propulsive push-offs for mid-race surges and finishing kicks. And let’s not forget the toothy 6-pin spike plate, which helps you stay aggressive when you need it most.

Wire 8: Endure and excel in extended races

Wire 8: Endure and excel in extended races

Distance: 1,500m – 10,000m

Spikes: 5

The Wire 8 is a performance track spike that will help you go your fastest in long-distance events. The XelightTM spike plate provides optimal energy return and just-right rigidity so you can toggle between cruise speed and running all-out during distance races. The 5-pin aluminum spike design teams up with the spike plate to deliver lightweight traction, while the nitrogen-infused DNA midsole provides optimal cushioning for faster transitions and distraction-free comfort on race day.

Draft XC: Conquer the demands of cross-country  courses

Draft XC: Conquer the demands of cross-country courses

Distance: Cross-country racing 

Spikes: 6

Designed specifically for middle and high school cross-country runners, the Draft XC racing spike helps young athletes conquer the varying terrain of cross-country courses. Dig into soft and muddy ground with strategically placed spikes and a durable rubber outsole, and maintain your pace with a wide midfoot, which provides stable footing on uneven terrain. Soft DNA cushioning is designed to keep your feet feeling comfy at every turn.

Find your fast with Brooks

Whether you're exploding off the blocks in a sprint or setting a relentless pace in a long-distance event, choosing the right spikes is crucial for tapping into your full potential on the track. Explore our collection of track and cross country shoes for men and women or visit your local running store for an expert fitting. We’re here to help every step of the way.

Disclaimer: Our writer's advice is intended for informational or general educational purposes only. We always encourage you to speak with your physician or healthcare provider before making any adjustments to your running, nutrition, or fitness routines.

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