It's no secret that New Balance has been pumping out the 2002R colourways. Say what you might about the quantity of colourways, this shoe has been a smash hit! Even so, there's someone in the design office that's looking out for the nerds because there has been a steady flow of archival references for those that know what to look out for. Take for example the 2002R 'Castlerock'. To the untrained, it looks like a new colourway in grey leather over a light grey mesh with navy and gold accents.
To those in-the-know, this is a deep-cut reference to an un-official NB colourway. Many New Balance anoraks may know it as the 'exclusive edition' spec - a designation present on a lot of shoes wearing this colourway. It's most commonly associated with the 1600 and 1700 models, but similar gold accents have also been applied to the 1500 'Just For Feet' and several other NB models throughout the years.
If you know what you're looking at, there's a bunch of details that are perfect. From the specific mesh used, the shiny finish of the leather and the bright blue hue of the N-ERGY gel pads. Whoever designed these knew who would appreciate them.