Saucony Ride vs. Brooks Ghost (2021 Edition)

Today we are going to talk about the very popular Saucony Ride and Brooks Ghost. In many running circles these two pairs of shoes are not only common, but popular.

With so much positive feedback coming from both companies and shoe models, it can feel difficult to make a decision, so we will be comparing these two trainers to make it a little easier for you!

The biggest differences are that the Brooks Ghost offers a softer, more luxurious feeling trainer. The Ride offers a more responsive and lively shoe with a snappier feel due to their extra support in the midsole and a shorter heel-to-toe drop. The Ghost is more durable shoe that should last you 100+ more miles than the Ride. Price wise Ghost costs a little more.

This article will compare Saucony Ride 13 and Brooks Ghost 13 to help lend some insight on the similarities and differences between these popular daily training shoes. We have quite a bit of ground to cover, so let’s get started!


Aesthetic/Design Appeal

Although it is possibly the least practical comparison of this article, many runners care quite a bit about how a pair of shoes will look.

So we are going to take a deeper look. Both Brooks Ghost and Saucony Ride have come a long way in the style department

Brooks 13

The Brooks Ghost 13 offers a sleek and comfortable upper that comes in just about any color someone would want. It will keep you comfortable and really contribute well to a sensible athletic look that many of us strive for these days. 

Brooks Ghost 13 Grey/Fair Aqua/Black 5 B (M)

You can pretty much go as loud or as tame on the colorways that you wish. The sole is usually white, but there are also some designs where the color fades from the upper into the sole, so keep an eye out for that! 

The padding will be comfortable, but the shoe will not look bulky on your feet or weigh you down more than you need it. The general design will leave you looking light and fit!

Brooks Women's Ghost 13 Running Shoe - Coral/Bossa Nova/White - 5
  • THIS SHOE IS FOR: The Ghost 13 is for runners looking for a reliable shoe that's soft and smooth. The Ghost 13 offers improved transitions for zero distractions so you can focus more on what matters most: your run.
  • SUPPORT AND CUSHION: The neutral support type provides high energizing cushioning. Ideal for road running, cross training, the gym or wherever you might want to take them! Predecessor: Ghost 12
  • BALANCED, SOFT CUSHIONING: BioMoGo DNA and DNA LOFT cushioning work together to provide a just-right softness underfoot without losing responsiveness and durability - yet it feels lighter than ever.

Saucony Ride 13

Although it comes with less color options, the Saucony Ride 13 still offers a good range of both loud and tame options that can fit your needs. The design is closer to a more traditional running shoe, so that may either be good or bad depending on your personal style. 

Saucony Women's Ride 13, Sky/Storm, 5.5 Medium

The midsole cushioning is white. The tongue is padded and the laces are not too long or too short. It is actually a pretty simple shoe design/style.

Sale
Saucony Women's Ride 13, Sky/Storm, 5.5 Medium
  • New PWRRUN cushioning protects from impact with a soft, yet responsive feel underfoot
  • TRIFLEX outsole optimizes flexibility
  • FORMFIT surrounds the foot in 3D comfort, enhanced by 3D-Print overlays
  • Engineered mesh provides structure or stretch where needed and enhances breathability
  • Category: Neutral

Upper Material 

The Brooks Ghost 13 and Saucony Ride 13 both have fairly simple and comfortable uppers with solid lockdown and breathability, but let’s take a deeper dive into both models directly for comparison.

Brooks Ghost 13

The Ghost 13 is constructed with an Engineered mesh material to provide lightweight structure and breathability. In fact, here is a breakdown of the weight of ALL Brooks shoes

The upper is breathable and has a particularly great lockdown around the top of the midfoot and around the ankle. 

Brooks Ghost 13 Grey/Fair Aqua/Black 5 B (M)

The lacing system is smooth and easy, so no need to fear then coming undone mid run!

Finally, there is an updated Heel Counter to create an even more secure heel fit. Everything here is super simple and it does enough to give you all the comfort you could possibly need without any of the extra frills.

Sale
Saucony Women's Ride 13, Sky/Storm, 5.5 Medium
  • New PWRRUN cushioning protects from impact with a soft, yet responsive feel underfoot
  • TRIFLEX outsole optimizes flexibility
  • FORMFIT surrounds the foot in 3D comfort, enhanced by 3D-Print overlays
  • Engineered mesh provides structure or stretch where needed and enhances breathability
  • Category: Neutral

Ride 13

The upper on the ride is made with Saucony’s FORMFIT construction, which combines a breathable mesh upper with 3D printed overlays for a fit that accommodates a wide range of foot shapes. (The Saucony Guide offers a similar upper in case you would rather view a similar shoe to the Ride)

The fit is pretty comparable to the Ghost, although the toe box will probably feel slightly wider. 

Saucony Women's Ride 13, Sky/Storm, 5.5 Medium

Saucony does really well with its internal sock liners, so you will have a ton of comfort when you step inside the shoe. Your foot will stay locked in, but you’ll also feel plenty of breathability as well. 

This upper does feel like it holds onto water a bit more than the Ghost 13, so be aware of this when wearing it out in the rain.

Sale
Saucony Women's Ride 13, Sky/Storm, 5.5 Medium
  • New PWRRUN cushioning protects from impact with a soft, yet responsive feel underfoot
  • TRIFLEX outsole optimizes flexibility

Sole Unit

The midsole designs here offer pretty much the same reliable daily trainer vibe, but in different packages. Let’s take a look.

Books Ghost 13

Brooks Ghost 13 Grey/Fair Aqua/Black 5 B (M)

The Brooks Ghost 13 comes with a soft DNA Loft foam that delivers a rather plush cushioning while maintaining responsiveness and durability. They seem to have found a super great way to offer the best of both worlds in the brooks innovation lab. 

Not many shoes can offer such a great combination of cushioning and responsiveness that still offers a ton of durability and reliability. You can feel the soft cushioning while slogging out the easy miles, but then when you want to pick up the pace you can definitely feel a good snap in the toe-off. 

For better flexibility there are Omega Flex Grooves throughout the bottom of the midsole foam and outsole to optimize forefoot flexibility without compromising cushioning. To further aid in a good transition, there is a Segmented crash pad that flexes with the foot. A good rule of thumb that I go by is if you can’t really feel the crash rail, then that means it’s doing its job well, and that is how the Ghost 13 works!

Brooks Ghost 13 Grey/Fair Aqua/Black 5 B (M)

The heel-to-toe drop is 12mm, which is a pretty high offset that is essentially exclusive to Brooks, and maybe some Mizuno shoes. This can ease the stretch on your calves and achilles, which is great if you need to rest these areas, but just remember to continue stretching so you don’t lose flexibility permanently.

Saucony Ride 13

Saucony Women's Ride 13, Sky/Storm, 5.5 Medium

The midsole on the Saucony Ride 13 is made up of PWRRUN foam, which  provides a lively ride with excellent durability and a touch of softness.

Saucony Women's Ride 13, Sky/Storm, 5.5 Medium

This shoe definitely leans closer to the responsive trainer side of things rather than a cushioning side. There is still plenty of protection, it just comes in a more responsive and less “plush” package. 

This shoe comes with an 8mm heel-to-toe drop, which is more of a traditional offset for daily trainers. It provides plenty of support, but isn’t quite as close to tightening up your postchain. 

Sale
Saucony Women's Ride 13, Citron Mutant, 5 Medium
  • New PWRRUN cushioning protects from impact with a soft, yet responsive feel underfoot
  • TRIFLEX outsole optimizes flexibility

Quick Factors to Consider:

Price: 

Both shoes have relatively the same sticker price. The price fluctuates from time to time. This is pretty much the going rate for a reliable daily trainer these days, I think we all wish it was closer to $110 or $120, but this is the world we live in. 

Durability:

For the Brooks Ghost 13, you will probably get around 500-600 quality miles out of it. This is a super solid lifespan for a shoe, and you can comfortably wear it as a walking shoe afterwards. 

As for the Saucony Ride 13, I think it will be closer to the 400-500 mile range, which is not bad, but it's not quite as good as the Ghost 13, which just seems to have stronger midsole foam and outsole rubber. 

Best Uses:

These are both great “do it all” type shoes. You could theoretically train for a marathon and then run the marathon in the same pair. Generally speaking though, both of these shoes will serve you best as a daily trainer, for easy runs and long runs. 


Conclusion

It is very hard to go wrong with either of these reliable trainers. They have both actually closed the gap on each other in the areas where they once had some clear discrepancies. 

I’ll keep it simple, if you are looking for a softer, more luxurious feeling trainer in this price range, then the Brooks Ghost 13 is going to be the one you should get. 

If you are looking for a more responsive and lively shoe with a snappier feel and a slightly lower heel-to-toe drop, then the Saucony Ride 13 is your shoe! 


Last update on 2021-04-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API