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If track spikes could talk...1948-Day 1 of 5

I love the history and heritage of products and want to share as I continue to go through the archives of products and documents in my office.

I want to share some of the footwear that has been inspiring to me and my teammates at Nike. The products are designed to master the fundamentals of the sport.

Each evolution of the spikes I show this week evolve in functionality, materials and performance each year.

To honor the lost track and field season of 2020 I want to tell a short story about each of these products this week which would normally be hosting the Oregon State Track and Field Championships at Hayward Field.

My Dad ran track at Grant High School in Portland Oregon. The track still resides in the Grant Bowl but is now an all weather track with an artificial turf field in the middle of a busy neighborhood.

When I started running for the Portland Track Club in the early 1970's, he would proudly bring out the shoes from his running career and share with me the features of each of these. He would consult with his high school and college team mates to compare notes on which season and year he competed in these shoes.

He ran the 800 between 2:05 and 2:10 and loved telling me he could have shaved off more time with the fancy spikes that started coming out in the 1970's.

You can imagine that he was amazed with the ongoing technology that I shared with my Dad about the evolution of products and how it transformed the sport.
Cowhide Track Spikes with size and width on tongue.
1948 100% Leather Cowhide Track Spikes with permanent spikes- The Brand, RIDDELL along with the size and width are perforated into the tongue

The shoes went on a road show in advance of the 1996 Olympic Games that showed the evolution and innovation of the Track Spike celebrating Michael Johnson's Golden Spikes in 1996.

These shoes were not only used by my Dad but they were photographed, displayed and shared as Nike continued to innovate in the world of Track and Field.

I would get the request to check them out for designers and innovators to use in their presentations.

 I believe at least 1/2 pair of these are on display at the National Track and Field Hall of Fame display at the Armory in New York City.

I want to celebrate at spike a day this week to honor all of those athletes out there not being able to compete and gather to celebrate the sport of track and field.

Fully leather cowhide track spikes with leather stitched soles. Spikes were not removable
1948-Cowhide Track Spikes notice the hole in the upper from spikes going through the toe.

1948 version of track and field spikes for cinder or dirt tracks
1948 Cowhide leather spikes with leather soles-No Brand but pure functionality.

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