The Inov-8 Race Ultra 290 is a performance trail running shoe designed for a neutral foot motion, ideal for ultra racing and daily training.


Other Colors:


The Inov-8 Race Ultra 290 is an exciting component of the Race Ultra line. Inov-8 fans will be pleased that the underfoot feel and grip that Inov-8 is famous for is not lost with some extra cushioning. As the namesake indicates, this shoe is built for long distances and looks to grace the feet of ultra runners everywhere. On shoe attachment system fits debris gaiter (sold separately).

Model Number:

Weight: 10.6 oz (size 9)

Stack Height: Heel (26mm), Forefoot (17mm)

Available Widths: D=Medium

How It Fits (based on width D) 

  • Sizing: Standard running shoe size
  • Heel: Medium to narrow
  • Midfoot: Medium volume
  • Forefoot: Medium
  • Toe-Box Height: Medium
  • Arch Structure: Medium-low
  • Shoe Shape: Semi-Curved


  • 2 Arrow Shoc-Zone provides moderate underfoot cushioning. This is Inov8's medium level of cushioning on their 0-4 arrow scale.
  • Injected EVA Foam for resilient cushioning with maximum memory retention.
  • Dynamic Fascia Band running from the heel to the forefoot acts as a rigid lever arm, releasing energy with each step and propelling the runner forward.
  • Meta-Shank extends from the midfoot to the forefoot in a 5-finger fashion, for flexible underfoot impact protection.


  • Race Ultra is a flatter trail outsole built with a low lug pattern. It is intended for use on both hard packed trails and occasional roads.
  • Endurance Rubber for increased durability and grip on mixed terrain.
  • Meta-Flex groove is located at the forefoot to encourage natural forefoot flex during toe-off.


  • Synthetic Mesh covers the upper for lightweight, breathable coverage.
  • TPU Lacing System uses TPU lacing supports for a strong, lightweight and secure fit.
  • 6mm Footbed for additional underfoot comfort.
  • X-Static XT2 uses the properties of silver to combat bacteria growth, fighting odor and athletes foot.
  • Gaiter Attachment allows perfect gaiter fit (matching gaiter sold separately).


  • Anatomic Last follows the natural shape of the human foot for a close and comfortable fit.

Footwear Performance Characteristics

Pronation Control: What's This?

  • Neutral
    • Min
    • Mod
  • Support
    • Min
    • Mod
    • Max
  • Motion Control
    • Mod
    • Max

Heel-Toe Offset (mm): What's This?

  • 0
  • 1-2
  • 3-4
  • 5-6
  • 7-8
  • 9-10
  • 11+

Stack Height:

  • Barefoot
  • Minimal
  • Low
  • Medium
  • High
  • Maximal


  • Road
  • Road-Trail
  • Hard Trail
  • Varied Trail
  • Soft Trail

Shoe Type:

  • Premium
  • Standard
  • Performance
  • Racing

Customer Reviews

Comments: It's a great shoe except it does not drain. I wouldn't recommend it in the Southeast where our race directors enjoy including over the ankle water crossings that you can't rock hop. If you do, be sure to stop, take off your shoes and drain them. Might as well change socks while you are at it. They work well for splashing through puddles.
From: Ben, TN, USA. March 20th 2015

Comments: As with David post I too am a long time Inov-8 wearer, mostly the OLD version Roclite 295's(9 pairs!!!) and recently the Trailroc 255, on my 3rd pair. I was happy to see these shoes geared towards ultras, I need more cushioning than the 255's have at the end of a 100 miler so I wanted to test these out. While the cush, fit and grip were nice(not as good as the old 295's) the real problem I had was they do not drain at all. the Rand(I think that is what is called) goes all the way around the shoe and keeps in water. I did a long run on a hot and very humid day and could feel the water in my shoes, felt like I ran through a stream even though it was dry out. This is a huge problem for me, my feet looked and felt like raisins after the run. If I wore these in a 100, I would have serious feet issues. Very disappointed in them. Other than the holding water they were good but if I can wear them then what good are they?
From: WV MT Goat, Anonymous. 

Comments: I was very excited to read that Inov-8 was coming out with a trail shoe specifically designed for ultra marathons. I trail run 70-80 miles per week and typically race 4-6 ultra marathons per year. I have always been a loyal customer for Inov-8 trail shoes since 2007. I have used Roclite 295, 315 and 320. Trailroc 245 and 255. I have used them as an ultra marathon shoe. Though all great shoes, I was hoping for a more cushioned and protective shoe for 50 mile, 100K and 100 mile races. Since purchasing the Race Ultra 290, I have found my ideal shoe. I have run 200 miles in the Race Ultra 290 thus far with my longest run covering 28 miles. It is very comfortable. Wide in the toe box, hugs the midfoot nicely and stays secure in the heel. I have a wide foot. The shoe is extremely comfortable with great cushioning and excellent protection based on their meta shank. This protects the foot from sharp rocks and still allows you to feel the trail without the use of an overly protective rock plate. The shoe is stiff in the midsole which is by design for long mileage as the foot will appeciate in later stages of a long run. The grip is aggressive but not overkill. I have run over rugged hard pack trails which includes rocky single track, loose dirt, technical single track, fire roads and pavement. The tread handles all with ease. The wide platform of the shoe gives me excellent stability with confidence to attack tricky sections of the trail. The shoe has some other nice features. Secure laces, nice toe bumper, an antistink footbed and the shoe looks great. Inov-8 really put together a wonderfully constructed trail shoe. I'm grateful to Running Warehouse because they got this shoe in before anyone else. Their selection of trail shoes and trail gear is awesome! Their customer service and well constructed website is second to none.
From: David Wolf, LA, USA. July 10, 2014.