Mount To Coast R1 Review: A Surprise Hit From A New Brand

The R1 hits the niche market for road ultra runners head-on with a WINNER but it also makes for a pretty great daily trainer!


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If you haven’t heard of Mount To Coast yet, it’s because they’re a fairly new running shoe brand. However, despite their freshness to market, I was eager to try out the Mount To Coast R1 ultra running shoes because, on paper, they look really impressive.

Mount To Coast markets the R1 as designed for ultra running distances of 100km or more, specifically targeting ultra runners who prefer road running. This is a pretty niche target market, as most ultra runners tend to favor running on the trails – and for good reason, it’s better! 😉

However, during my testing, I discovered that these shoes might be suitable for a broader range of runners. So, let’s explore who else can benefit from running in the Mount To Coast R1. To learn about Mount To Coast’s other shoe, the S1, designed for ultra training, read my review here.

Key specifications of the Mount To Coast R1

  • Price: $160 at
  • Fit: True to size, medium width with a spacious toe box
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 8mm (35mm at the heel, 27mm at the toe)
  • Weight: 8.3oz (235g) for a US men’s size 9 (my pair)
  • Upper: Double-layer breathable jacquard mesh with 40% recycled polyester, with a tuned fit dual lacing system. Includes reflective detailing for safety in low light conditions
  • Midsole: PEBA-based nitrogen-infused super critical foam (50% lighter than EVA foam)
  • Outsole: Segmented rubber compound for traction and flexibility

R1 running shoes performance review

At Trail & Kale Running Co., we fully run test the shoes we review (believe it or not, some sites that like to cut shoes in half and call it a review, do not), with that said, you can also watch my performance video review by tapping my face in the image below 😄 – Don’t forget to give the video a like if you enjoy it (that really helps our channel), and subscribe to our Youtube Channel for more reviews of the latest running shoes.

Mount To Coast R1 Review [VIDEO] by Trail & Kale Running Co.

The R1 is clearly designed for long-distance road ultra running, or what some might affectionately call “shuffling”, certainly towards the end of an ultramarathon, at least, and understandably so!

The lightweight build, supportive structure, and roomy toe box make it a joy to run in. The GoFlow midsole technology provides stability and corrects gait, which is vital for maintaining comfort over long distances.

Fit and feel

The R1 fits true to size with a medium width, and the toe box is airy, allowing your toes to breathe and splay out.

The R1 fits true to size with a medium width, and the toe box is airy

This is very important for long-distance running and maintaining good biomechanics. The shoe has an 8mm drop from heel to toe, which gives a balanced feel, and at 8.3oz, it’s very lightweight for such a cushioned, supportive shoe.

The upper is made of double-layer breathable jacquard mesh, which includes 40% recycled polyester. This material ensures your feet stay cool and comfortable.

The Mount To Coast R1 dual lacing system does give a nice fit but it can be a bit annoying to do up, making me wonder whether it's just a gimmick.

The dual lacing system does give a nice fit but it can be a bit annoying to do up, making me wonder whether it’s just a gimmick.

The midsole offers a nice balance of cushioning and responsiveness, giving you energy return with each short stride – yes, they perform better with higher cadence, short stride, slower running.

The midsole uses Mount To Coast’s LightCell technology, a PEBA-based nitrogen-infused foam that’s 50% lighter than EVA foam according to Mount To Coast.

The midsole uses Mount To Coast's LightCell technology, a PEBA-based nitrogen-infused foam that’s 50% lighter than EVA foam according to Mount To Coast.

This midsole is lightweight and provides excellent cushioning and bounce on the run, and the geometry of the midsole incorporates Mount To Coast’s ‘GoFlow’ technology, which uses varying density foams to help correct your gait. This feature is particularly beneficial for runners with pronation issues, ensuring a natural and efficient gait, and hence better running form.

The outsole features segmented rubber, which enhances flexibility and the fine detailed pattern on the rubber compound has so far proven to grip well on various road surfaces.

Mount To Coast R1 Review: A Surprise Hit From A New Brand 1 - Trail and Kale | Trail Running & Adventure

I was genuinely surprised by these running shoes. When a new brand enters the market, it’s common for their first models to have some shortcomings, but the R1 performs exceptionally well. It’s clear that Mount To Coast invested a lot of time in research, simulations, and athlete testing to create a shoe that delivers on its promises.

While the R1 is marketed for ultra runners on roads, it also makes for an excellent daily trainer for those more concerned about getting daily mileage rather than setting new PRs.

So, if you’re looking for a lightweight, highly cushioned, and stable daily trainer, the Mount To Coast R1 could actually be a great choice for you too. Its breathable upper, comfortable fit, and responsive midsole make it suitable for daily jogs and long training runs, not just road ultra races.

On the Mount To Coast R1, there is also reflective detailing, which provides visibility in low-light conditions

Lastly there is also reflective detailing, which provides visibility in low-light conditions. This is a critical feature for road runners, especially those who run early in the morning or late in the evening when visibility is low as you will at some point be runner near cars.

Is the Mount To Coast R1 worth buying?

Are the Mount To Coast R1 shoes worth the $160 price tag? Yes I believe they are, especially if you’re an ultra runner who runs on the road. But even if you’re not, these they’re a great daily trainer too.

They’re comfortable, lightweight, cushioned, and provide great stability with the GoFlow midsole. The only minor drawback is the dual lacing system, which can be a bit cumbersome to do up every time, but it’s not a deal-breaker. This is the only area I feel Mount To Coast needs to rework for the next version.

The Mount To Coast R1 has been one of the biggest surprises of the year for me, so far, and I’m excited to see how the brand develops over time.

If you’ve had any experience with Mount To Coast, I’d love to hear your thoughts – leave a comment and share your opinions.

Thanks for reading this review, and if you enjoyed it, please share it with a friend and subscribe to our blog for more running shoe reviews. Happy running!

As the founder of Trail & Kale, and seasoned marathoner & ultrarunner, Alastair loves bringing our readers independent running shoe reviews and gear insights to help you run your best. Learn more about Trail & Kale here.



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