Nike Pacific Running Summit and the Launch of the Pegasus 41

Across two days in June, Nike hosted running enthusiasts from across the Pacific at the inaugural Nike Pacific Running Summit. In attendance was Runner’s World Australia and New Zealand, who were audience to the many insightful presentations of Nike’s core values, innovation and upcoming campaigns.

Kicking off on Global Running Day, the inaugural Nike Pacific Running Summit invited guests to celebrate the release of the 41st iteration of the iconic Pegasus shoe. For our review of this model please read here.

We were invited to gear up in the newest Nike apparel.

Molly Polack, Senior Partner Representative, interviewed Kathy Gomez, VP of Footwear Innovation, who is based at the Nike World Headquarters in Portland, Oregan. Gomez revealed the testing process of Nike shoe prototypes, commenting that over 70% of test subjects are recreational athletes.

Speaking with Kathy Gomez in Portland.

Nike highlighted that they champion no less than victory. Athletes* are encouraged to make this intimidating word their own. Similarly, Nike defines athlete as so: *if you have a body, you are an athlete. For the brand, “victory” encompasses every runner’s achievement, from an Olympic Gold Medal and broken World Record, to finishing a Park Run or a first Marathon.

After a day of learning about the longevity and journey of the Pegasus, guests were seeded with their very own pair of the new Pegasus 41’s. Runner’s World Australia and New Zealand opened their box to find their shoes in the iconic Vault colour-way, noting visibility would never again be a problem.

Air Zoom Pegasus 41
Pegasus 41 in the Vault colourway

Led by Nike Pacific Head Run Coach, Lydia O’Donnell, the uniformed group made their way to Olympic Park Oval, in an excited collection of fluorescent yellows, oranges, and teal Swooshes. Soundtracked by DJ beats, guests took their new shoes for a spin around the track as the sun set over the city.

Our run was truly a celebration of the new Pegasus 41’s.
Warm up, led by Lydia O’Donnell.

Day 2 begun with an eye-opening deep-dive into Nike’s dedication to the science of sports bras. On stage, Molly Polak revealed Nike’s motto, “no sports bra no play,” a modern callback to primary school days where “no hat no play” governed the playground. With this motto at their foundation, Nike illustrates the significance of a good sports bra for women in sport.

Those who wanted were fitted with their own Sports Bra, a process which revealed how little consumers know about what fit is right for them.

Molly Polak.
The Swoosh Bra.

In the Olympics Innovation Showroom, Runner’s World Australia and New Zealand was gifted insight into Nike’s thrilling innovations for the 2024 Paris Olympics. From fashionable colourways designed especially for the stylish city and cushioning primed for gold, Nike stated their Paris campaign is about victory.

Nathan Tidmarsh takes the audience through Nike’s Olympic campaign.
Nike is pushing boundaries with cushioning in footwear.

Channeling inspiration from the numerous presentations at the Summit, guests got creative in the customisation workshop. Armed with scissors, stickers and an industrial hot plate in place of the humble iron, this rewarding experience saw guests create a personalised Nike jumper, and offered an enjoyable insight into the values of fellow runners, who spelt out the names of their run clubs, favourite courses and running friends in adhesive letters.

For the final rotation, Abby Wirth, Nike Pacific Communications Lead, interviewed a panel of inspiring Australian Nike athletes: Sinead Diver, Ivy Boothroyd, Jaryd Clifford and Angus Hinchsman.

Diver spoke to her unusual journey into running, which began after her first child at age 32. Diver is challenging assumptions and breaking societal boundaries, competing in the Marathon Event at Paris 2024 aged 47. Diver said she is hungry for victory.

When asked about her close bond with her parents, Boothroyd gave a heartfelt and teary response, outlining how their support has enabled her to persevere through consistent injury.

Wirth, in talks with Paralympian Clifford, posed the question of whether he believes the Paralympics should be combined with the Olympics. “For two weeks a year, para-athletes get the spotlight,” Clifford said clearly into the microphone, emphasising his excitement that the world will soon get to watch people with disability in the prestigious games.

Offering vulnerable insight into his mental health struggles, Clifford outlined how his fixation on winning a gold medal deteriorated his enjoyment for the sport. Since then, Clifford’s definition of victory has changed. Although his pursuit of a gold medal remains a motivator, Clifford noted that now, he wants to make sure that “on race day, there’s nowhere else I would rather be.”

The heartwarming friendship between Hinchsman and Clifford felt emblematic of the entire Summit: runners naturally want to support, uplift, and champion each other. Runner’s World Australia and New Zealand are ever grateful to be a part of this community, and to Nike for hosting them at the inaugural Nike Pacific Running Summit in 2024.

Read our Tried and Tested Review of the Nike Pegasus 41 below.

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