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In 1935, the deaths of six of Bramani’s mountaineering friends in the Italian Alps was partly blamed on inadequate footwear. The tragedy drove Bramani to develop a new climbing sole. Two years later, he patented his invention and launched the first rubber lug soles on the market with a tread design called the “Carrarmato” (~ “tank tread”), with the financial backing of Leopoldo Pirelli of Pirelli tires. The sole was designed to provide excellent traction on the widest range of surfaces, have a high degree of abrasion resistance and was made using the latest vulcanized rubber of the time.
In 1954, the first successful ascent to the summit of K2 was made by an Italian expedition wearing Vibram rubber on their soles.