Thursday, October 11, 2012

Nike We Run Jozi to inspire novices

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Nike’s We Run Jozi 10km race could not complain about lack of media interest. 

600m after the start of the race
A Facebook campaign, during which each registration by an entrant “unveiled” part of the route, ensured that the race got good social media coverage. The 20 000 runners were encouraged to visit the race Facebook page for updates on pack collections and were directed to visit the Nike Expo stand in Rosebank.

Nike Jozi Run route
 The race route started in Sandton, crossed the M1 highway, through Alexandra Township, and ended in Innesfree Park, linking the two faces of Johannesburg: township poverty and leafy suburb affluence.
At the start Poppy Ntshongwana, DJ Fanatic, break dancers and a drumming band encouraged the crowd, all wearing black Nike t-shirts, who were waiting on mayor Parks Tau to set them off. They were further entertained by live entertainers and refreshments at the finish line in Innesfree Park.
Almost 80% of the runners were novices and everybody who finished received a medal, while the top eight male and female finishers received cheques to the combined value of over R100 000.  Xolisa Tyali won the men's category with a time of 29:57:7, while Rutendo Nyahora (from Zimbabwe) won the women's category in 35:24.

Nike Jozi Run
“Running, being the most basic form of athletic expression, has the power to bring communities together,” says Nike’s marketing director Anwar Jappie.  “The Nike We Run series aims to inspire and motivate the everyday athlete, making it possible to run in your own backyard."

Primary school children from Alexandra township
A portion of each runner’s registration fee was used to enable 1 700 primary school children from Alexandra and rom Nike’s grassroots programmes to run a 2.5km race in bright orange t-shirts on the Saturday prior to the race. The Nike’s programme is a partnership with Sport for Social Network and Grassroot Soccer. For many of the children it was their first official race experience, and the idea is to grow a future passion for running.

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