words // Nick Engvall

Texas native, Michael Johnson is one of the greatest sprinters in USA history. While many of his teammates have fallen from grace due to doping allegations, Johnson avoided the fiascos by simply being an incredible athlete. From the early nineties until when he retired after the Sydney Olympics in 2000, Johnson racked up 4 Gold Medals at the Olympics, and 8 Gold Medals at World Championship competitions. In 2004, he was voted in to the United States Track and Field Hall of Fame.

Michael Johnson may be well remembered for his Gold Medals, but his gold footwear also helped make him a fan favorite. After he appeared in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics wearing track spikes that looked as if they had been dipped in gold, the attention remained on his feet for the rest of his career.

For this week’s Eastbay Memory Lane visit, we take a look at the black and gold running shoes that we’re created for him by Nike, the Nike Zoom JSC. The Zoom JSC featured a unique spike configuration, a specific design for the left and right shoe even, that helped Michael Johnson run 200M in 19.23 seconds. The double-sided design featured gold stripes on the lateral side, and a simple black makeup on the medial sides. The design was about as unique as Michael’s upright running posture.

Eastbay Memory Lane: Michael Johnson