07 September 2011

Softball Legend Jennie Finch Teams with TIMEX® to Run ING New York City Marathon 2011 for Charity

MIDDLEBURY, CT (SEPTEMBER 7, 2011) – Legendary pitcher Jennie Finch will set aside her softball glove and pick up a GPS-enabled Timex® watch as she takes on her next athletic challenge, the ING New York City Marathon 2011, on Sunday, November 6th.

Widely regarded as the greatest softball player of all time, Finch gained national notoriety for her superior performance at every level of the sport, and the rare combination of grace and power with which she dominated her opponents.

Finch, who welcomed a second son in June, is quickly regaining her form and preparing for the marathon with the new Timex® Ironman® Run Trainer™, a GPS-enabled watch that provides real-time pace and distance and is the latest addition to Timex’s growing portfolio of advanced training products. Timex and Finch will work together to support New York Road Runners (NYRR) Youth Programs, which currently serve more than 100,000 children in hundreds of schools and community centers nationwide, promoting health and fitness, character development, and personal achievement in underserved communities. 

“As a lifelong athlete who loves to compete, I look forward to testing my limits and getting into the best shape of my life with Timex,” Finch said. “As a mother, I am even more energized by the fact that together, Timex and I will make an impact on the lives of children benefitting from NYRR Youth Programs and encourage students across the country to become physically active.”

Finch will train with the Timex® Ironman® Run Trainer™, a GPS-enabled training device boasting real-time pace and distance, as well as compatibility with ANT+™ Foot Pod and Heart Rate sensors, all wrapped in an iconic Sleek™ design that has made Timex Ironman a favorite with runners for years. The watch has a large, customizable display, allowing users to easily view their preferred information during workouts, and can be synced with a computer after workouts to review maps and performance. 

Timex will also supply Finch with a marathon coach, Timex Multisport Team athlete Susanne Davis. A decorated triathlete who most recently wowed the field at the 2010 Ford Ironman World Championship, Davis broke the existing 35-39 Age Group world record and placed second overall among all amateur athletes. She was the first amateur American woman to cross the finish line. Davis also understands how to balance training with motherhood, as she is a mother to a seven year-old son, Matthew, and three year-old daughter, Brooke.

Finch’s goal is to get fitter and faster than ever before, because on race day she will be the very last person to start the race. For each person she passes, Timex will donate $1 to NYRR’s Youth Programs. The campaign will also raise money through the fundraising network Crowdrise.com, where fans can go to support the charity’s efforts.   

“Jennie has seen tremendous success on the softball field and we’re thrilled she is now making the transition to endurance sports by participating in this year’s ING New York City Marathon,” said Adam Gurian, President, Timex Business Unit. “Jennie set incredibly high goals for herself at a young age and has worked hard to achieve them. We are excited to have the opportunity to play a key role in Jennie’s training by gearing her with the new Run Trainer, which will enhance her training and in turn help us raise more money for NYRR Youth Programs.”

Timex, one of the world’s largest watch companies, is a principal sponsor and the exclusive Official Timing Partner of the ING New York City Marathon. The partnership with Finch continues the precedent set by the company in 2010 with Amani Toomer, in which the former New York Giants star trained with the Timex Ironman Global Trainer GPS watch and ran fast enough to pass over half the race participants, raising $25,817 for NYRR Youth Programs.

Timex’s presence in the fitness world has been evident for years via its partnership with the New York Road Runners in conjunction with the ING New York City Marathon, Ironman Triathlon event series and several worldwide marathon sponsorships.  With a wide array of wellness and training instruments priced at various levels, Timex has established a broad appeal to the millions of consumers who want to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Following a brilliant collegiate career at the University of Arizona in which she amassed several NCAA records, including most consecutive victories (60), Finch led the U.S. to a gold medal in 2004 and silver medal in 2008, in Athens and Beijing, respectively. She pitched professionally for the Chicago Bandits of the National Pro Fastpitch softball league before retiring in 2010 at the age of 30, to focus on her growing family with professional baseball pitcher Casey Daigle. Jennie remains an active leader in the sport, hosting Jennie Finch Softball Camps each summer and regularly playing in celebrity and charity games. She is training for the marathon from her home in Louisiana, where she resides with her husband and two sons, ages five years and three months, respectively. Her marathon training coincides with the launch of her first book, Throw Like A Girl, designed to teach young girls the importance of setting goals and following their dreams, currently available in bookstores nationwide.

Fans can follow Finch’s progress and view her GPS training logs on the Timex Sports Facebook Page, as well as @TimexSports and @JFinch27 on Twitter. The Timex Ironman Run Trainer watch will be available for purchase in October 2011 in U.S. Sports Specialty retailers and on Timex.com, priced from $225 to 275 (with Heart Rate Monitor chest strap).

About Timex Sports Watches

Timex has an unparalleled heritage of creating innovative, technologically advanced and reliable timepieces for endurance athletes, having introduced the first licensed Ironman brand watch in 1986. The Timex Ironman brand legacy of leadership, innovation and style in international sport is evident in the brand’s extensive anthology of elite training devices and fitness aids. Timex Ironman timepieces are worn by athletes on every continent and have been added to the Smithsonian National Museum of America.  Fans are invited to engage with the brand on www.Facebook.com/TimexSports.

About the Timex Group

Timex Group designs, manufactures and markets innovative timepieces and jewelry globally. Founded in 1854, Timex is part of Timex Group, a privately-held company with numerous brands and over 5,000 employees worldwide. It is one of the largest watch makers in the world with companies and exclusive licenses worldwide.

New York Road Runners

Headquartered in New York City, New York Road Runners is dedicated to advancing the sport of running, enhancing health and fitness for all, and meeting our community’s needs. Our goal is to use the expertise acquired in our 53-year history to empower all people to live fitter, healthier lives through participation in our races, community events, instruction and training resources, and youth programs. Our races and other events draw more than 300,000 people each year. The ING New York City Marathon, NYRR’s premier event, is the largest and most inclusive marathon in the world, attracting the world’s top professional runners every year and raising $30.8 million for charity in 2010. NYRR’s running-based youth programs, which currently serve more than 100,000 children in hundreds of schools and community centers, promote children’s health and fitness, character development, and personal achievement in underserved communities. For more information, visit nyrr.org.

The ING New York City Marathon

The premier event of New York Road Runners, the ING New York City Marathon is one of the world’s great road races, drawing some 140,000 applicants. The race attracts many world-class professional athletes, not only for the $800,000 in prize money, but also for the chance to excel in the media capital of the world before two million cheering spectators and a worldwide broadcast reach of 330 million. As any one of the more than 875,000 past participants will attest, crossing the finish line in Central Park is one of the great thrills of a lifetime. For more information, visit www.ingnycmarathon.org.