Wicks Dynasty keeps running to firsts
Phil Wicks of Allianz (left) and Emily Wicks of Punter Southall break the finish line tapes in Battersea Park to win titles at the 2014 J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge.
at Corporate Challenge in London
|LONDON AT A GLANCE
Margaret Batty, Director of Campaigns, WaterAid, speaks to the participants.
||28th running of J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge®. The 5.6-km race course was held entirely within Battersea Park, on the banks of the River Thames.
||Capacity and London-record crowd of 14,779 entrants (82% runners; 18% joggers and walkers) from 407 companies.
||Clear, comfortable 21 degrees Celsius (70 Fahrenheit) at the 6:52 p.m. race start.
PwC (673 entrants); Credit Suisse ( 454); UBS (382); Citi (354); Ernst & Young (300).
MEN: Phil Wicks, Allianz, 16:42
WOMEN: Emily Wicks, Punter Southall, 19:39
||This marks the eighth consecutive year that the London races have sold-out and the popularity is indicative of the success of the 2014 J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge Series. Eight of the 10 events in the Series this calendar year have reached full capacity. This year's race was preceded by the J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge Championship, marking the first time that the Championship was held in Europe.
LONDON, July 9, 2014 — The 28th running of the J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge® in London was unlike any other held along the banks of the River Thames.
First, it was the largest Corporate Challenge crowd in London history — a capacity 14,779 entrants from 407 companies.
Notable on a global level, it was the first time London — or any European city for that matter — hosted the J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge Championship, bringing together the first place men's, women's and mixed teams from all 13 cities from seven countries in the 2013 Series.
The 31st edition of the Championship continued its “Olympic” rotation of Series cities, after visiting Johannesburg, Singapore, Chicago and Rochester, N.Y. since 2010.
Stop us if you have heard this story before, but the husband and wife team of Phil and Emily Wicks were the individual winners.
Phil, representing his new employer, Allianz, won the men's division in 16:42, fighting off a valiant effort from Nicholas Torry of Commerzbank (16:47).
Emily, wearing the colors of Punter Southall, was a comfortable women's winner in 19:39, outdistancing Miriam Vernizzi of GE Capital, who ran a solid 20:22.
This is the fourth consecutive year that the Wicks Dynasty has swept the men's and women's crowns on the same night of racing. It was Phil's seventh London Corporate Challenge title overall, the sixth for Emily.
J.P. Morgan, owner and operator of the Corporate Challenge, showed its commitment to the event by sending a massive contingent of 1,981 employees to the starting line, in the shadow of the famous Battersea Power Station chimneys. Among all other companies, PwC led the field in terms of volume — entering a massive 673 employees. Credit Suisse was second with 454, followed by UBS (382), Citi (354) and Ernst & Young (300).
Entrants in the London race were running for a smart cause, as J.P. Morgan made a donation on behalf of their effort to WaterAid. Serving the poorest people in 27 countries in Africa, Asia, the Pacific Region and Central America, WaterAid provides safe water, improved sanitation and hygiene education. Corporate Challenge participants also have the opportunity post-event to contribute to an optional fundraising initiative.
The Championship runners will head to Heathrow and Gatwick Airports for their respective flights home on Thursday. Meanwhile, the 2nd night of J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge racing in Battersea will continue with 14,700 entrants from 326 companies gathering for a 6:45 p.m. start.
AXA gathers for a team photo at the 2014 J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge in London's Battersea Park.
Transnet Engineering. It is the dominant name in corporate road racing circles.
The Johannesburg, South Africa powerhouse swept the individual men’s and women’s titles — Benedict Moeng breaking the men’s tape in a stunning 16:24, while colleague Thozama April won her race in 19:29. Behind those two sterling efforts Transnet won the men’s and women’s team titles.
Transnet now has 13 team titles (eight men, five women) since Johannesburg joined the J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge Series in 2004.
Corning, which has long been the signature team of the Rochester, New York event, took its superiority to a global level this year, winning the mixed division title, behind an excellent effort from Brendan Glover (18:31) and Morgan Burrows, who, with a time of 19:37, was just one of three women in the race to break 20 minutes.
Polizei Bayern, representing Frankfurt, Germany, and San Francisco’s iconic Google were the “medalists” in the men’s division, finishing second and third respectively.
The Frankfurt/San Francisco combo also clicked in the women’s division with Bundespolizei and Sports Basement finishing 2-3.
London’s BSKYB and Boston’s Fidelity Investments received their on-stage recognition as the second and third finishers in the mixed divisions.
Competing for the Westpac team from Sydney, which finished fifth in a closely-bunched mixed division, Annabel Mertz summed up the Championship experience for many.
"As a team we hoped to be able to run our best," Mertz said. "It is great to experience the benefits of a healthy and fit lifestyle. We also looked to have fun and soak up the once-in-a-lifetime experience. I feel fortunate that I am able to run and appreciate every time I run how lucky I am. Life is so precious, even the little things like going for a run are not possible for everyone!"
Complete individual and team results from the Championship are available by clicking here.