LEXINGTON, MA (November 24, 2009) – For the second time in three years, Saucony, Inc., a leading global supplier of performance athletic footwear and apparel, has been recognized with the competitive “Shoe of the Year” award by the Independent Running Retailers Association (IRRA) for the Saucony ProGrid™ Guide 2 – the brand’s flagship light stability trainer. The award was presented to Saucony at The Running Event, an annual running conference and expo that brings together the major players in running – running specialty retailers, vendors, race directors and training groups – recently held in Austin, Texas.
“The entire Saucony team is extremely proud to be recognized by the IRRA,” said Patrick O’Malley, Saucony’s vice president of global product for Saucony. “At Saucony, we’re intently focused on providing runners with the best-in-class innovation, style and performance throughout our entire product line. Our business and passion is to inspire runners. The Guide 2 reflects that, and it’s gratifying to see this recognition honor our passion and focus. We hope that runners everywhere will enjoy the supportive, smooth ride of this great shoe,” said O’Malley.
Designed to slow down mild overpronation, the ProGrid Guide 2 is a light stability shoe featuring a Dual Density Impulse EVA midsole for greater durability and responsiveness under the arch. The ProGrid technology in the heel combines seamlessly with the SRC XTRA forefoot cushioning to ensure an efficient transition and a smooth ride. The ultra-plush Comfortride sockliner is constructed from an exclusive material to offer both wicking and antimicrobial properties, while providing responsive cushioning and additional comfort. (Sizes: men’s 7-13, 14 and 15, and women’s 5-12; MSRP: $95.00)
This is the second time that a Saucony product has been recognized by the IRRA with this award. In 2007, the Saucony ProGrid Omni 6 took the title, based on its reputation as the ‘go-to’ shoe for retailers.
Also at The Running Event, industry veteran Fred Doyle, Saucony’s vice president of field sales, was inducted into the IRRA Running Specialty Hall of Fame. Doyle was selected as a Vendor/Influencer inductee based on the major impact he has had throughout his career in growing the specialty running business as an athlete and business person.
“We are so pleased and proud that the industry has recognized Fred in such a meaningful way,” said Richie Woodworth, president of Saucony.
“The IRRA is an integral part of our running community and is dedicated to the growth and health of our sport,” said Woodworth. “Their standards and expectations are high, and we will continue to strive to exceed them with great products, excellent service and a team dedicated to the specialty running business,” added Woodworth.
About Saucony, Inc.: Saucony, Inc., a subsidiary of Collective Brands, is a leading global supplier of performance athletic footwear and apparel with its widely recognized brands Saucony and Saucony Originals. For more information, go to www.saucony.com.
About Collective Brands, Inc.: Collective Brands, Inc. (NYSE: PSS) is a leader in bringing compelling lifestyle, fashion and performance brands for footwear and related accessories to consumers worldwide. The company operates three strategic units focused on multiple price points and selling channels. Collective Brands, Inc. includes Payless ShoeSource, focused on democratizing fashion and design in footwear and accessories through its more than 4,500-store retail chain; Collective Brands Performance + Lifestyle Group, focused on lifestyle and athletic branded footwear and high-quality children’s footwear sold primarily through wholesaling, with its brands including Stride Rite®, Keds®, Sperry Top-Sider®, Robeez®, and Saucony®, among others; and Collective Licensing International, the brand development, management and global licensing unit. Information about each of the Collective Brand’s units can be found at