German sportswear company Adidas has released its latest racing shoe – the Adidas Adizero Adios Pro – which they believe “will break world records.”
As a ceremony in Prague on Thursday, Adidas unveiled the shoe with a photo shoot featuring top Kenyan and Ethiopian athletes who will also line up for an assault on world half marathon records on Saturday in the Czech capital in a unique event dubbed ‘Prague Restart’ as the new shoe makes its debut.
Adidas say the journey to developing the shoe started in Berlin on September 28, 2008 when Ethiopia’s Haile Gebrselassie broke his own world record and became the first man to dip under the two hours, four minutes’ barrier over the 42-kilometre distance.
“A decade later, the Adizero Adios Pro was created by a dedicated team with one goal in mind – work with world-class athletes to develop our fastest running shoe,” Adidas said on their website.
More athletes involved
Other athletes involved in Adidas’ research and development were half marathoners Stephen Kiprop and Philemon Kipruto, marathon stars Amos Kipruto, Abel Kipchumba, Bethwell Yegon, Albert Korir and Tamirat Tola, two-time Eindhoven Marathon champion Festus Talam and two-time Prague half Marathon winner, Bernard Kimeli.
“I’m very happy to be guest of ‘Prague Restart.’ Prague is where I started my career and it is always good to be back,” Rhonex Kipruto said.
“After the race, the plan is to visit Adidas HQ in Herzogenaurach and to continue to work on various new shoe models and technologies.
“Before that, I will be supporting my friends here and especially my brother Bravin, who will be pacing the race.”
According to Adidas, the collaborative process directly led to the shoe’s design breakthrough, coming up with EnergyRods.
“EnergyRods consist of five tuned carbon-infused rods, which mimic the metatarsal bones of the foot, allowing runners to maintain their speed for longer, optimising running economy and creating less physical impact on the body,” Adidas explain.
“The midsole also includes two layers of LightstrikePRO, our lightest and most responsive foam material to-date, providing maximum cushioning and more energy storage.
“Helping runners maintain speed throughout long distance races, where every second counts. Topped off by a nylon and carbon fibre heel plate, which – combined with the EnergyRods – offers stability for the ankle joint, and correct bending behaviour of the runner’s foot for a smooth ride.”
Kenya’s Abel Kipchumba, a 59:29 half marathoner, was also involved in Adidas’ research and development that brought forth the Adizero Adios Pro. He was among the athletes at the Prague launch on Thursday.
“After many travels to Kenya, many shoes, many prototypes, we are now at the end of this process and as one of the athletes who was in the project from the beginning, I’m happy to see the project through.
“I’m happy how the product has developed over time and how much co-operation there has been between Adidas Running and Kenyan athletes.”
Race timetable changes
On Friday, organisers gave further details for Saturday’s half marathon races in Prague.
“On Saturday, the race kicks off at Letná Park at 6:20 in the morning (7.30am Kenyan time) with the men’s programme, and the women will start their run at 8:00 (9:00am, Kenyan time),” a statement from the organisers said, having changed the order of the starts with the women race starting first, and the men’s thereafter.
“However, both starts can be easily shifted depending on ideal climatic conditions,” race head Carlo Capalbo of RunCzech said.
“There are three reasons for the early start: after six in the morning, the wind blows the least in the Letná area and the temperature should be at the ideal level of 13 degrees.
“Also, because of the coronavirus situation, most probably a larger number of people will not gather around the course..
“Unfortunately, at this time we can’t invite anyone directly to the “Oval”, but thanks to the live broadcast, no one will be deprived of a unique experience,” says Capalbo.
Davor Savija of RunCzech, who has been engaged in preparing Saturday’s events, the development of the Adidas shoe and also co-ordinating athlete preparations, said they are happy the show is finally on the road.
“We are almost there, final steps, time of diligence and attention to detail, despite the fatigue that is setting in,” he said.
“All in all, an unusual experience for many of us and we are looking forward to everything coming together and, hopefully, inspiring runners, other event organisers and everyone else in the industry.
“What became a possibility in late July is becoming a reality now, and there is something romantic about all of this that is happening in Prague for the ‘Prague Restart.’
“ Weeks to remember, nerves are kicking in, many dreams to come through this weekend. As the saying goes – Pressure creates diamonds.”
Capalbo, who is also the founder of the Prague International Marathon, was besides himself with joy.
“So much emotion for our RunCzech team,” he said on Friday.
“We are at the brink of the biggest event in sporting terms for us, two more nights to go and this is when absolute attention must be paid to all aspects of the organization.
“We are ready, athletes are ready, Adidas’ Adizero Adios Pro shoes are ready and we are looking forward to Saturday and our Cesko bezi dal (Czechia keeps on running) Grand Finale and Prague 21.1 km.
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