Mercedes-Benz Up For Grabs at Mercedes-Benz Mile on June 16th in Ontario May 15, 2007 by: Press Release
CAMBRIDGE, ONTARIO ---- May 15th, 2007--- Mercedes-Benz Canada will award the winner of the 2007 Mercedes-Benz Classic Mile a brand new Mercedes B200 sedan should he beat the magic four minute mile.
The event is scheduled for Saturday June 16th, 2007 on the crushed brick track at Galt Collegiate Institute, Cambridge.
Two years ago Laban Rotich of Kenya beat the barrier at this event setting a meet record of 3:58.9. He also won the 2006 edition. Rotich is the tenth fastest miler of all time with a personal best of 3:47.65 and has confirmed he will attack the four minute mile on June 16th and attempt his third consecutive victory.
JoAnne Caza, Director of Communications and Public Relations for Mercedes-Benz Canada said the annual event held in Cambridge, Ontario fits the company model for excellence.
“To me its reminiscent of the work Mercedes-Benz has done in the last 120 years to become what it is today,” she explains. “I just felt it would represent us well and gives us an opportunity to support a very different event.”
“Mercedes-Benz, on a global basis, has sponsored track and field events and has given away cars as a first prize. In fact Donovan Bailey (1996 Olympic 100m champion) won a car at an event in Europe once and we had to deliver the car here in Canada because he lives here. So it wasn’t completely foreign to us. These are people who physically and mentally really go beyond. They are accomplished and passionate athletes.”
Caza admits race director John Carson’s enthusiasm for the event is what sold her on the idea and that she looks forward to continued association with the Cambridge community.
“We don’t like doing a lot of one off things,” Caza explained. “It’s about establishing a presence. It’s about establishing an association because very often the first year there is limited exposure, so there needs to be a little bit of a run on it.”
The Mercedes-Benz executive intends to be on hand to cheer on the runners and would like nothing better than to award the car which has a value of over $30,000.
“We wouldn’t do it if we didn’t believe in it,” she declares. “It’s not just about getting a free ride. If there is somebody out there who can do it, and Rotich did it a few years ago, then that person deserves the prize.”
In the hopes of ‘keeping it in the family’ Rotich is bringing along his younger brother Shedrack Korir, 28, a world class middle distance runner in his own right. Korir has run the equivalent of a 3:50 mile and was the 2006 Kenyan national champion over 1,500m. The pair might work in concert to beat four minutes and so win the car.