The “Sacramento” brush spike amazes with its innovative brush soles – 68 small, only 4mm long bristles in the front area of the foot: Numerous American athletes, who wear the boot, set new world records just a few weeks prior to the games in Mexico. However, according to the association, the shoe is deemed “too dangerous” and consequently banned. All athletes wearing the shoe have their world records withdrawn – a fact that has not been rectified until today.
Nonetheless, PUMA athlete Tommie Smith wins gold in the 200m in similar PUMA spikes and causes a stir: he and his teammate John Carlos (bronze) raise their fists in the Black Power salute, protesting against discrimination of African Americans and other minorities in the USA, apartheid and racism. In addition to Tommie Smith, Lee Evans (400m, 4x400m), Willie Davenport (110m high hurdles) and Bob Seagren (pole-vault) win gold wearing PUMA shoes.