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The Untold Story about the Nike Cortez Kenny Moore

nike cortez kenny moore history-01

Get to know the real story of the Nike Cortez “Kenny Moore”

This is the story of the Nike Cortez Kenny Moore and also of Kenny Moore, Nike’s first “human tester”. We all have heard about the Cortez (and also and even checked some of its special editions).

The Cortez is one of the most iconic silhouettes in sneaker industry that released back in 1972 during the Munich Olympics, worn by Team USA. However, few people know about Moore.

Kenny Moore was a runner, more specifically a long-distance runner from the University of Oregon that soon became an Olympic Marathoner. As expected, not much was available back in the days when it comes to shoes and technology.

After a run, he was forced to do an x-ray, showing that his right foot was injured. He was running with a hi-top shoe, something that we clearly know today is simply not correct.

While Moore stopped for 6 weeks, Bill Bowerman (Nike’s Co-Founder) created a custom shoe that would solve most of his problems, at least when running, having in mind cushioning and arch supports as well as a more durable sole. With that said, Moore runs over 1000 miles in test shoes.

He adds that “every shoe was custom made for me. I had the privilege of becoming a better runner every time I put a new prototype on.” Due to Bowerman’s interpretation of Moore’s problems, even if the original idea was not to solve every athlete’s complications and dilemmas, the Cortez was created.

It was the beginning of an era.

nike cortez kenny moore

Image Credit: END. Clothing

A tribute to Kenny Moore:

Celebrating the history of the Cortez and paying homage to Kenny Moore, the Nike Cortez Kenny Moore is a swooshless special edition of the silhouette that took inspiration from one of Bowerman’s first prototypes.

The shoe features hand-written “Moore” across the white leather upper while nylon and suede are also present in the construction of this model, giving it a perfect retro look. Extra details are seen on tongue, insoles, and midsole.

You can learn a bit more right here, although, to further add to this awesome release, Bowerman was Moore’s coach at University. The pair is releasing via Nike SNKRS App and at select retailers worldwide.