History Unfolding

What legend takes the crown?

Kenenisa Bekele and Eliud Kipchoge are the undisputed kings of the marathon. The Ethiopian athlete was a 16-time world champion and won 3 gold medals at the Olympics. The Kenyan is the world marathon record holder and was the first human ever to run the marathon distance in less than 2 hours. In 2020, the two titans faced each other for the first time at the marathon in London. Who will walk away with the win?

Portretfoto Joshua Cheptegei
King's Crossing with Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele
Kenenisa Bekele and Eliud Kipchoge in competition outfit for King's Crossing

The London marathon is not the only running event taking place that week. Three days after this event, runners compete in the 10,000 metres almost 2,000 kilometres away. They will do so in Valencia. The biggest contender at that event is Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei, Olympic Gold winner and world youth champion in the 10,000 metres. He comes to Valencia with a mission: to break the world record at this distance. Meanwhile, he is eager to challenge the established order, to ultimately become the new king of the marathon.

Kings Crossing
A battle of this magnitude is rare in running. To give the stars of NN Running Team extra exposure, Capital Sports came up with the concept of 'Kings Crossing', a nod to this famous spot in the British capital. Combining this event with the 10,000 metres in Valencia created a true King's Week.

Thanks to this campaign, NN Running Team managed to generate maximum attention for both events. Thousands of fans followed their heroes on social media. A live broadcast of the battle in Valencia on NN Running Team's YouTube channel kept many viewers glued to the proverbial tube.

Spanish spectacle
Yet during King's Week, it proved that even the best athletes are not infallible. Kipchoge experienced a rare day of bad luck during the London Marathon. An injury prevented him from getting the most out of himself. The Kenyan crossed the line in eighth place. Still a great performance - but not by the champion's high standards. Bekele was even more unlucky. He had to drop out before the race even started due to a calf injury.

Better news came from under the Spanish sun. In Valencia, Cheptegei managed to break the world record in spectacular fashion. With a time of 26:11:02, he smashed the time set by Bekele 15 years earlier.

Party for fans
Despite the setbacks - and thanks to the successes - NN Running Team saw their YouTube subscribers increase significantly because of the King's Week campaign. This greatly expanded the fan base for future events. This is not only good news for the team itself, but also for the sponsors. They can count on even more brand exposure at the running team's events.

About NN Running Team

Not so long ago, running was an individual sport. Until NN Running Team changed that in 2017. Former athlete Jos Hermens decided that long-distance and marathon runners are stronger as a team, and founded the world's first professional running team. In doing so, he started a revolution.

Soon, top athletes like Eliud Kipchoge, Kenenisa Bekele and Abdi Nageeye joined the team. With such names, of course, success was just a matter of time. In recent years, NN Running Team was able to win many marathons, Olympic 5,000, and 10,000 metres and set multiple world records. The top performances follow each other in rapid succession.

Capital Sports was involved in this successful project from the start. Together with Global Sports Communication, we ensure that not only runners are ahead in their races, but that the marketing also outshines the competition. Together, we bind and captivate fans around the world.

The goal of NN Running Team is to further professionalise the running sport. This increases its attractiveness to fans and sponsors. This professionalisation is also reflected in the communication. Through campaigns, websites, apps and activations, we are increasing the fan base to boost NN Running Team, the fans and the athletes.

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