The 2007 Personal Best Awards marked a new venture for Runner’s World but one that was long overdue – an annual celebration of all the best things in running. Our aim when founding the Awards was to recognise and reward the products and services runners find most valuable, and to ensure that the people who cast the votes were those who were actually using the products.
In February’s issue of RW we asked you, the readers of the magazine and the users of www.runnersworld.co.uk, for your favourite brand or product across eight running-related categories: food and drink, shopping, charity, brands and campaigns, shoes, gear, health and events. To avoid influencing the vote in any way there were no shortlists or suggestions – it was a completely open vote in each case. The winner of each individual award was simply the product, event or company that received the highest number of votes.
Thousands of your votes were counted to give us the winners of 28 individual awards and six elite categories. The elite awards were then presented to the winners at a glittering prize-giving ceremony in London a few days before the Flora London Marathon in April, attended by 10 RW readers who had won tickets in the draw for everyone who voted.
So without further ado, as they say at awards ceremonies, here are the Personal Best Awards as chosen by you, the RW community.
ELITE AWARD WINNERS
Cancer Research UK has single-handedly reshaped the landscape of the running market. Its Race for Life 5K series has introduced millions of women to the sport, and has raised the bar of what a fund-raising event can achieve. What started as a single event in Battersea Park in 1994, last year attracted more than 700,000 women to more than 200 events, and raised more than £50 million for research into cancer. Cancer Research UK has also launched a successful 10K programme and continues to work closely with teams of runners and fundraisers at major running events across the country.
BEST RUNNING BRAND
While Nike has grown into the largest sportswear business in the world, it was originally founded by runners and has stayed loyal to its roots. It has developed pioneering technology in footwear, apparel and gear but still prides itself on being “for runners, by runners, created by people who understand the hearts, minds and bodies of runners”. Whether you want to put your iPod in tune with your pace, choose a personalised running shoe in your favourite colour combination or participate in its Run London 10K, Nike continues to stand out from the crowd.
Winner Asics Gel DS trainer
What you said about it "A top-class running shoe – light, comfortable, highly recommended." "PB-breakers for your feet! Asics have come up trumps with the DS trainer."
Highly Commended Nike Air Zoom Elite
Winner Inov-8 Mudroc
What you said about it "Serious fell-shoes with excellent grip." "I’ve never worn shoes that were better for feeling the ground."
Highly Commended Salomon XA Pro
Winner Nike Air Pegasus
What you said about it "The Nike shoe that has said it all for years." "Even the sports shop said once you’ve had the Pegasus you probably wouldn’t want to try another!"
Highly Commended Asics Gel Nimbus
Winner Asics GT-2120
What you said about it "The lightest stability shoe around, it gives a fast-feeling, smooth ride." "Good-looking, bouncy, beautiful heel-to-toe transition, a shoe of the highest order."
Highly Commended Asics Gel Kayano
Winner Brooks Beast
What you said about it "Superb support shoe – does what it says on the tin." "These shoes are, in my experience, number one for severe overpronators."
Highly Commended adidas Supernova Control
MARKETING CATEGORYAdvertising Campaign
Highly Commended Reebok
GEAR CATEGORYRunning Stroller
Winner Baby Jogger
Highly Commended Mountain Buggy
Highly Commended Ronhill
Winner Garmin Forerunner 305
Highly Commended Garmin Forerunner 205
Winner Timex Ironman 50
Highly Commended Nike Triax
Winner Camelbak Flashflo
Highly Commended Runaid Bottle
Winner Shock Absorber
Highly Commended Marks and Spencer
Winner iPod Nano
Highly Commended iPod Shuffle
Highly Commended Sainsburys
Highly Commended startfitness.co.uk
High Street Retailer
Winner JJB Sports
Highly Commended John Lewis
Highly Commended Up & Running
FOOD AND DRINK CATEGORYBottled Water
Highly Commended Vittel
Winner Muller Light Yoghurt
Highly Commended Soreen Malt Loaf
Winner Bassett’s Jelly Babies
Highly Commended Mars Bar
Winner Lucozade Sport
Highly Commended SIS PSP 22
Highly Commended Quaker Oats
Winner SIS GO Gel
Highly Commended Lucozade Sport Carbo Gel
HEALTH CATEGORYHealth Insurance
Highly Commended AXA PPP
Pain Relief Product
Highly Commended Deep Heat
EVENTS CATEGORYInternational Marathon
Winner ING New York City Marathon
Highly Commended Marathon de Paris
Winner Flora London Marathon
Highly Commended BUPA Great North Run
UK Small Event (under 5,000 runners)
Winner Bushy Park 5K Time Trial
Highly Commended Abingdon Marathon