Runner's World PB Awards 2008 - The Winners

Chosen by you and rewarded by us - we celebrate the products and services that help make running great (including UK's Best Running Club Award)


Posted: 23 April 2008

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The Runner's World Personal Best Awards aim to recognise and reward the products and services that have helped make your running so enjoyable and enriching.

This year, to accommodate the Heroes of Running Awards, we had Awards in just a few key categories, the winners of which are the result of widespread feedback from the Runner's World community.

New for 2008, is the UK's Best Running Club Award, which undoubtedly presented our panel with the most difficult decision. All of the clubs considered were either nominated by readers or recommended by experts, notably England Athletics' regional development officers.

Still, without further ado, here are the winners...




UK'S BEST RUNNING CLUB (sponsored by New Balance)
Poole Runners

Since its birth in 1981, Poole Runners has always prided itself on being a friendly and sociable club. It’s lost none of that accessibility over the years as it has evolved into the quintessential community running club with genuine appeal to runners of all ages and abilities.

Despite competition from another long-standing local club, Poole Runners’ plethora of qualified coaches and its willingness to throw out the welcome mat to new runners has seen membership grow to nearly 350.



They range from aged eight to 78, including a thriving junior programme and a healthy group of talented seniors who are competitive at national and regional level. Club nights are always well attended and at most local road races the club turns out 40 to 50 runners – it’s not unusual to see its vests among the first and last 10 at any event.

But Poole Runners is about more than competition: it’s always willing to put something back into the local community, organising nearly 20 races throughout the year – including its flagship Poole Running Festival – and a host of other social events.


OTHER AWARDS WINNERS




BEST OVERALL PRODUCT
Garmin Forerunner 50

Garmin’s compact sports watch is easy to use and simple to download to your computer. You can upgrade it to a wireless heart rate monitor and speed and distance monitor and it’s still excellent value.



BEST NUTRITIONAL PRODUCT
SIS Smart 1 Energizer Gel

SIS introduced the first isotonic gel back in 2000 and it is once again leading the way with its Energizer Gel, offering rapidly absorbed carbohydrate with an added kick of caffeine and antioxidants.



BEST SHOE
Saucony ProGrid Triumph 5

This update of a long-running Saucony model is widely acclaimed as a great shoe. Its broad appeal is based on the combination of lightness and speed in a well-cushioned package.



BEST RUNNING RETAILER
Sweatshop

Its commercial message ‘We Know Running’ is no idle boast. For 36 years it has been the standard by which other running retailers are assessed and it remains so today both in-store and online.



MOST IMPROVED EVENT
Puma Trailfox Coniston Trail Race

This demanding 15K off-road race has always been well regarded, but in 2007 every runner who graded it gave it a 100 per cent rating and raved about its outstanding scenery and slick organisation.



BEST NEW EVENT
Leeds 10K Jane Tomlinson's Run For All

In a single year this city-centre charity run has evolved from a germ of an idea into a solid fixture on the running calendar. Just over 8,000 ran in 2007 and in 2008 it filled 11,000 places four months early.

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