CK: When you were designing the 997 did you start with the premise that it was going to function primarily as a running-based shoe and then build around that with other sports uses?
Stanchak: We really started with what a typical training shoe would be. It would be a little bit flatter, less of a drop from heel to toe. Better ground feel. That’s where the starting point came from. I should also probably touch on Quix, the other tech in this shoe. The flex grooves. When we compare running to training, when you’re running it’s a lot of heel and toe motion and your foot seems very flexible. When you’re cutting your foot seems very rigid and you’re usually landing on your forefoot. So what we wanted to do was create a flex pattern based around the functionality of the foot while you’re cutting so that Quix is aimed at that triangular shaped flex groove and pod underneath the medial forefoot which breaks under your foot where it’s likely to land first so it gives you better traction.
CK: Are techs like ProBank and Quix the result of one person’s work or a group coming together to brainstorm and problem solve?
Stanchak: It’s definitely a team effort. Brett helped with this shoe in the beginning stages so he was involved with ProBank and Quix. We’ve also worked with Pedro Rodriguez who heads up our Sports Research Lab. He’s involved with all the testing as well as high speed video, knows everything about the foot and body and how everything moves. So he comes up with a lot of great inspiration points for us as well so it’s definitely a collaborative effort.