The appointments of Michael Capiraso and Peter Ciaccia as the Co-Presidents of the New York Road Runners (Peter is Events/Race Director, and Micheal is President and CEO), after the departure of Mary Wittenberg, showed that the NYRR had a strong management plan in place.
Studying the bidding for the NYC Marathon, and then writing on it, on a forensic level, would take the length of a 19th century Russian nihilist novel. This is just, for those who remember them, the Cliff notes (very abridged).
It seems that the New York Road Runners Club saw that they needed to develop a property that included more of their events, stronger licensing fees, higher visibitily retail presence, with a brand that would share that vision and committ a larger share of said running footwear brand’s pocketbook.
The NYRR valued their new property brand, built around the marathon at a much higher level than some did. However, there was interest in New York, and still is in the New York City Marathon. It is one of the priz jewels in the sport of road racing.
After several brands were contacted, the bidding continued to evolve, and some of the actors in this game got frustrated. Truth was, the bidding for the NYC marathon now makes it the most expensive sponsorship in the sport of road racing. There was always going to be one winner, and the losers would not be, to put it in modern vernacular, “happy campers.”
Forensically speaking, a ten year deal, with up to seven races in the package, licensed apparel, footwear, and the stature of the New York Road Runners Club was a huge carrot.
ASICS was the footwear and apparel sponsor from 1991 to 2016. A long reign in any position. The new sponsor will have to put many resources into keeping the New York City Marathon sponsorship in working order.
It is a far cry from when, in 1975, Fred Lebow asked several companies for $5000 to support the marathon, and they turned it down. One media giant in running asked for money from Fred Lebow to manage his race. Another, George Hirsch, then publisher of New York Magazine, generously gave of his time and money, as did several sponsors who shared the vision of a Five Boroughs Marathon.
It will be interesting to see how, once again, our sport evolves.
ASICS America To End TCS NYC Marathon Partnership Following 2016 Race
IRVINE, Calif., Dec. 7, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — ASICS America Corporation today announced that it will end its 25-year partnership with the TCS NYC Marathon following the 2016 race. ASICS has and will proudly serve as official footwear and apparel partner of the race for the final time next year, continuing its long tradition of robust consumer activation and official marathon product collections. ASICS has been a prominent supporter of the marathon dating back nearly half a century to the first running of the race by fewer than 100 people in New York’s Central Park.
“ASICS has had a tremendous run with the TCS NYC Marathon over the last quarter century and we will always hold the amazing runners and fans in New York near and dear to our hearts. Though not easy, this was a strategic business decision, as the running and marketing landscape continues to change so dramatically. This was the right time for us to take a strategic look at our overall marketing and engagement plans for the future,” said Gene McCarthy, ASICS America President and CEO.
“As one of the world’s premier performance running brands, the sport is in our DNA and our commitment to runners of all kinds and developing the very best products and experiences for them will never change. Runners perennially choose ASICS over other brands in top races across the U.S. and abroad, and our loyal fans will continue to wear ASICS proudly as they run the famed streets of New York City’s five boroughs at the TCS NYC Marathon for many years to come. Knowing that 2016 is our last year, we have some great activations planned that will provide another terrific experience for all those involved in the marathon. We look forward to celebrating with all of the inspiring marathoners from around the world in New York again next year.”
In addition to the brand sponsoring nearly 200 running events in the U.S. and internationally, ASICS America continues to support many of the world’s top and up-and-coming long and middle distance runners, including Olympian Deena Kastor, who recently broke the American masters marathon record in Chicago, Olympian and American half marathon record holder Ryan Hall, Sara Hall, Diego Estrada, Heather Kampf, Shadrack Biwott, Josphat Boit, Julie Culley, Lauren Jimison, Ryan Martin, Alysia MontaÃ±o, Adriana Nelson, Gabe Proctor, Becky Wade and Bria Wetsch.
For more on ASICS America, please visit: http://www.asicsamerica.com.
Anima Sana In Corpore Sano, meaning “A Sound Mind in a Sound Body,” is an old Latin phrase from which ASICS is derived and the fundamental platform on which the brand still stands. The company was founded more than 60 years ago by Kihachiro Onitsuka and is now a leading designer and manufacturer of performance athletic footwear, apparel and accessories. For more information, visit www.asics.com. Follow @ASICSamerica on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube for exclusive content and real-time news around ASICS products, events, and elite athletes.