This Sunday is the London Marathon and both the men’s and women’s races are historically deep. On the men’s side, Mo Farah and Eliud Kipchoge are toeing the line and both runners will be wearing what we’re pretty sure is a secret Nike shoe.

Both runners have posted Instagrams concealing their footwear. The shoes are a fiery secret, but here’s our best guess as to what they are.

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A Vaporfly 4% with a crepe upper

The Vaporfly 4%, which is the commercial version of the shoe inspired by the Nike Breaking2 project, is made of ZoomX foam, the infamous carbon plate and a flyknit upper. Farah’s shoe could potentially be the ZoomX foam and carbon plate with the same upper as the Nike Zoom Fly SP. The upper on that shoe is an ultra-light crepe-like material, which could make the shoe even more efficient.

A Vaporfly 4% with holes in the upper

Another possibility is that, to limit weight, Nike has made the upper of the shoe more spike-like. Similar to their Zoom Victory 3 upper which has a hole in the heel (unnecessary fabric), the new racing shoe could remove fabric where it isn’t needed, making the shoe even lighter.

Nike Vaporfly 4%
Photo: Matt Stetson. Nike Vaporfly 4%.

Revolutionized lacing system

Lots of companies have produced a racing shoe with a BOA lacing system, similar to that seen on cycling shoes. But Nike has held out on the system, likely cooking up a new way to tie their shoes. Another possibility for the Farah/Kipchoge shoe reveal is that Nike has done away with laces entirely. When you’re arguably the two most famous marathoners in the world, Nike will make you a special shoe. There’s a chance that they’ve moulded a shoe to their feet and completely done away with laces. All they have to do is slip them on, like really athletic water shoes. This is an outside shot, but we’ve seen Nike do crazier things.

 

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