Despite a shocking second place finish last night, Allyson Felix remains a record-breaking athlete. The elite track and field sprinter, who has access to the best running shoes, has been outfitted with a pair of custom fit Nike spiked running sneakers for the entirety of her Olympics run. This unique pair of sneakers was over 2 years in the making, with Nike testing over 30 versions of the shoe’s spike plate and revising the design over 70 times before settling on a final version. Felix personally met with the Nike team over a dozen times from May of 2014 to test the various versions of the custom sneaker.
According to Nike,
This level of prototyping is facilitated by advance manufacturing techniques; SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) 3D printing reduces sampling time from weeks to days. The rapidity facilitates immediate feedback, quick iteration and, fundamentally, enables a better final product for the athlete.
“Our role in the Innovation Kitchen is to invent the future of performance innovation for athletes. We do that with a mission to make athletes better. In this work with Allyson, the product that has been created is making her measurably better,” said Tony Bignell, VP Footwear Innovation, NIKE, Inc., when Felix’s custom shoe was first unveiled earlier this year.
Felix’s sneakers are not available to the public.