Thursday, July 25, 2019

Rare Nike 'Moon Shoe' auctions for $437K, breaking sneaker auction record

A rare pair of Nike sneakers with a storied history has just shattered auction records.

Sotheby's auctioned off the Nike "Moon Shoe" for $437,500 Tuesday night, "far surpassing" the pre-sale high estimate of $160,000, the auction house said in a press release. The previous world record for sneakers sold at auction was set in 2017 for a pair of signed Converse worn by Michael Jordan in the 1984 Olympic basketball final.

Just 12 pairs of the Nike Waffle Racing Flat, or Moon Shoe, were ever made -- and fewer exist today, according to Sotheby's. They were designed by Nike co-founder and renowned Oregon University Track Coach Bill Bowerman for runners at the 1972 Olympic trials.

Bowerman was inspired to create the innovative "waffle" sole traction pattern found on Nike's early running shoes after tinkering with his wife's waffle iron, pouring rubber into the mold to create the first prototype for the sole.

The sneakers were purchased by "avid collector" Miles Nadal, and are the only known pair to exist in unworn condition, according to Sotheby's.

"I am thrilled to acquire the iconic Nike ‘Moon Shoes,’ one of the rarest pairs of sneakers ever produced, and a true historical artifact in sports history and pop culture," Nadal said in a statement.