The folks at Nike are absolutely giddy over Tiger Woods's victory last Sunday at Jack Nicklaus' Memorial Tournament.
And they have good reason to be. Friday, June 8, marks the public release of the Nike TW 13s, which are the shoes Woods now wears.
There has been enough written about Woods's swing changes to fill the national archives; but one of his biggest changes came in 2011, when he donned the prototype shoe that was patterned after his workout and running shoes, the Nike Free.
The reason for the change was simple. Woods has a long list of documented physical ailments, including an oft-aggravated Achilles tendon. Woods had some conversations with his main sponsor and Tobie Hatfield, and his Nike oven innovation staff began work on a prototype.
Woods wore the prototype for the first time at the 2011 WGC Bridgestone, and they've been on his feet ever since.
It marked a big change for a guy who had, until then, worn metal spikes for his entire golfing career.
Nike took the outsole design from the special field boots that they manufacture for the military and other fast responders. They combined that design with the Free upper, which was created to mimic the movement of the human foot. Add the Flywire lacing system that was created back in 2008, and you have the new shoes they created for Woods.
Talk about timing. When Woods holed his birdie putt on the 72nd hole at Memorial and headed to the scorer's room to add up his pars and birdies, Nike was running its first ad for the TW 13s on the CBS telecast.
The shoes will be available at most golf retailers at a price of $180.
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