New York

Sotheby's Sells 99 Pairs Out of the 100 Rarest Sneakers of All Time

The big buyer is Miles Spencer Nadal, the Founder and Executive Chairman of the private investment firm Peerage Capital and the philanthropic initiative Dare to Dream

What to Know

  • From July 11 to July 23, Sotheby's is auctioning off 100 of the rarest sneakers in history.
  • One buyer has purchased 99 of the sneakers in the collection, less than a week after the auction's opening date.
  • The remaining piece, the 1972 Nike 'Moon Shoe', one of Nike's first sneakers, will still be up for grabs until the auctions official end.

Sotheby’s has sold 99 out of 100 pairs of rare sneakers less than a week after presenting the “Ultimate Sneaker Collection” for auction.

The auction, which began July 11 and closes July 23, is a collaboration between Sotheby’s and sneaker marketplace Stadium Goods. It features 100 of the rarest sneakers in history, with some kicks priced at more than 6-figures.

The big buyer is Miles Spencer Nadal, the Founder and Executive Chairman of the private investment firm Peerage Capital and the philanthropic initiative Dare to Dream. Nadal originally offered to buy all 100 shoes, but the coveted Nike Waffle Racing Flat “Moon Shoe” will remain up for bidding until the auction’s official close, as per request of the consigner. Sotheby’s estimates this shoe will sell for over $110,000.

“I have always been an avid enthusiast and appreciator of unique art and collectibles that represent innovative design, exceptional craftsmanship, and new and exciting trends in pop culture,” says Nadal. “I am excited to showcase these magnificent sneakers”.

Nadal plans to display the sneakers in his private museum, along with his collection of over 142 cars and 40 motorcycles.

Here is just a sample of the goodies Nadal will be taking home come July 23, assuming someone does not outbid him for Nike’s ‘Moon Shoe’:

The 1972 Nike Waffle Racing Flat ‘Moon Shoe’

The most historically significant pair in the collection, The Nike ‘Moon Shoe,’ was created circa 1972 for runners in that year’s Olympic trials. They were designed by Nike co-founder Bill Bowerman and were handmade by one of Nike’s first employees, Geoff Hollister.

Its careful construction gives these shoes some special handmade qualities, including shear markings from scissors near the soles and a hand-stitched ‘swoosh’, not to mention textured soles that were molded with a waffle iron. Only about 12 pairs were created, and Sotheby’s is showcasing the only pair known to exist in unworn condition. They are estimating the shoe to sell for $110,000 to $160,000 -- a sum big enough to buy a Maserati.

‘Back to the Future II’ Nike Mags

Any fans of ‘Back to the Future’ will recognize the Nike Mags. These are the sneakers Marty McFly donned in Back to the Future Part II -- you know, the ones that were able to lace themselves. While the 2011 release of the pair looks basically the same to the ones in the movie, including the high-cut and futuristic light up features, they were missing one key element – the auto lacing.

In 2015, the year McFly time travels to in Back to the Future Part II, Nike rereleased the sneaker, and this time, the shoes were able to tighten themselves. Sotheby’s gave the 2011 pair a starting bid of $11,000 and the 2016 pair one of $40,000.

Air Jordan 11 Jeter

The Air Jordan 11 Jeters are dedicated to one of New York’s favorite Yankees. Only five pairs were made, and all of them were given out at a pop-up shop near Yankee Stadium the day of Derek Jeter’s retirement ceremony in 2017. Nike distributed the limited pairs by using a scratch-off lottery system. The Jeter is one of the rarest Air Jordan 11s ever produced, earning the blue suede sneakers a $30,000 starting bid.

Though you missed out on your chance to own all but one of the pieces in the “Ultimate Sneaker Collection”, you still have a chance to admire Nadal’s new shoe rack. The sneakers will be on display at Sotheby’s until July 23.

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