Churchill Downs teamed up with Factory8384 to display 13 customized AF1s — dubbed the “Legends of the Derby” collection — throughout the weekend.
Winning the Triple Crown in horse racing — taking first in the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes in the same season — is as elusive as it gets. Only 13 horses have achieved such a feat in the history of the sport, the latest being Justify in 2018.
To honor this exclusive group, Churchill Downs, the home of the Kentucky Derby, teamed up with Factory8384 to present the “Legends of the Derby,” a sneaker collection that contains customized Air Force 1s that pay homage to these past champions. Each pair is on display this weekend ahead of Saturday’s big race, with each being available for purchase through a silent auction (top bidders will receive a made-to-order pair). A portion of the auction process will benefit The Secretariat Foundation.
At the end of the weekend, three pairs from the display collection will be taken from the set and auctioned off through Sotheby’s. The 10 pairs that aren’t chosen will be donated to the Kentucky Derby Museum.
According to the press release, “the ‘Legends of the Derby’ collection is inspired by the jockey silks of the Triple Crown winners, and each sneaker is meticulously handcrafted using premium materials.”
The project came to be through Factory8384, a high-end sneaker customization studio based in Los Angeles. The company’s co-founder Curtis Brown crafted the idea when he was thinking of ways to honor his late father Louis “Tige” Brown, who was a lifelong racing enthusiast. Brown and his family used to spend weekends at the racetrack, including the 2015 Kentucky Derby.
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