Looking to increase its exposure within the elite running community, Hoka One One has entered into a multi-year agreement with the Northern Arizona (NAZ) Elite, whose members include top marathoners Aliphine Tuliamuk and Scott Fauble.
The new four-year agreement begin January 1, spans two Olympic cycles and is intended to increase not only the personal level of support for each of the club’s individual athletes but also the club’s overall infrastructure. The funding will provide for an increase in the size of the club, an increase in the coaching resources and will also enable the club to offer health insurance to each of its athletes — a rarity for distance running sponsorships.
Based out of Flagstaff, AZ and sponsored by Hoka since 2015, NAZ, under the leadership of head coach and club founder Ben Rosario, has become one of the premier distance running collectives in the world. Among its runners’ accomplishments are Tuliamuk’s winning the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials and Fauble’s first American finish at the 2019 Boston Marathon.
In addition to Fauble and Tuliamuk, the Hoka NAZ Elite roster includes American track and road stars Stephanie Bruce, Kellyn Taylor and Lauren Paquette as well as rising international stars such as New Zealand’s Matt Baxter, Canadian Rory Linkletter and Alice Wright of Great Britain.
“Hoka and NAZ Elite took a chance on each other in 2015, when we were both smaller and looking to make our marks on the world of competitive distance running,” says Mike McManus, director of global sports marketing at Hoka One One. “With a string of impressive results, culminating in Aliphine Tuliamuk’s Trials win in February, it’s safe to say this has been a mutually beneficial partnership. We are thrilled to extend our sponsorship of NAZ Elite and to build a more robust network of support for one of the best and most engaging distance squads in the world.”
“All of us at NAZ Elite are thrilled to continue working with HOKA; a brand whose aggressive, innovative and inclusive nature very much mirrors our own,” Rosario says. “This new deal, and the amenities it will provide for our athletes, will allow us to compete with any team in the world for the top stars coming out of the NCAA and provide those athletes with an environment in which to reach the sport’s highest levels.”