Sports apparel giant Nike has decided to withdraw its offer to sponsor top American pole-vaulter Brad Walker. The decision came after the Spokane native placed tape over the company’s swoosh logo on his shoes during a recent competition.
The New York Times reported 32-year-old Walker had been negotiating a sponsorship contract with Nike for some time, but said he was not satisfied with the size of the offer. News of Nike’s withdrawal came earlier this week, according to the Times.
Walker, among the top pole-vaulters in the world in recent years, said on his Facebook page the tape on his shoes had nothing to do with taking a shot at Nike.
“Big no no,” Walker wrote. “I am no longer a Nike athlete because while trying to use one of their products, I had to use tape to hold together a shoe that shouldn’t break down within 6 months.”
Walker added he did not feel obligated to jump for Nike as he was not yet an official Nike athlete.
At the time, Walker was competing at the 2013 IAAF World Championships at the Luzhniki stadium in Moscow, Russia.
As of Saturday, Nike had not responded to Walker’s comments.
Brad Walker Graduated from University High School in 1999 and went on to compete for the University of Washington, where he became NCAA indoor pole vault champion twice and was a four-time NCAA All-American. Walker is currently the American record holder in the pole-vault.