Aspire Active

How Tim Don’s moving story sparked mass media coverage for On

Client

On

Services

Media relations

Brief

Spread the word about the incredible story of world champion triathlete Tim Don

Tim Don was preparing for the Kona ironman when his world was shattered by a training accident. Aspire helped to tell his amazing comeback on behalf of his sponsors On. Tim’s powerful story went on to capture worldwide interest.

Overcoming the odds

Tim Don is a British triathlete, ironman world champion and On brand ambassador. His world was turned upside down after being hit by a car while on his bike in the last days of training for the Kona ironman contest in 2017.

He suffered multiple life-threatening injuries, but his determination, incredible talent, positivity and sheer will to achieve the unthinkable, saw him comeback and run the Boston Marathon in April 2018.

On supported him on his recovery journey and created a powerful film which captured the hearts of the nation and beyond.

On approached Aspire to help tell Tim’s incredible comeback story to inspire athletes and followers of the brand, and to spread the word about this true sporting hero.

“Swiss-based sportswear sponsors On, who immediately renewed his deal for another three years following the accident — had the utmost belief in an incredible recovery.”

Daily Mail Online

Reaching out to a wider audience

Whilst staying close to the heritage core audience of On, we also reached out beyond these contacts and took the tale to the mainstream news and lifestyle media.

We issued targeted media releases with access to remarkable imagery from Tim’s recovery trail. We also made the athlete himself available for interview, including an appearance at the London Marathon Expo ahead of the 2018 event and the ‘Run to Switzerland’ event at the Swiss Embassy.

Such a remarkable story of determination and desire to fulfil one’s life goals in the face of unimaginable adversity makes for a truly inspirational read.

By making Tim and his story available to Aspire, On were able to ensure a much wider audience became aware of his incredible achievements.

Making the headlines

15.4M

The reach of Tim’s interview on the Chris Evans Radio 2 Breakfast Show

200M

The combined reach of online, print and broadcast coverage, including the Telegraph, Mail and Sun

18

Pieces of coverage – 220 Triathlon, RedBull.com, Outdoor Fitness & Runner’s World

The power of a moving story

The incredible story of Tim’s return to racing, coupled with his genuine, media friendly qualities as a brand ambassador, struck a chord with press and media beyond the running and triathlon world.

National radio and newspapers picked up Tim’s story and ran with it, generating awareness of his journey to get to the Boston Marathon. This also helped to create a noise around the imminent release of a film, produced by Hungry Man, telling his story in greater detail.

Alongside features in RunnersWorld and a range of triathlon publications, BBC national radio and the biggest selling mainstream news media in the UK – The Daily Telegraph, The Mail and The Sun – all covered the tale of Tim’s recovery and his ambition to run a marathon again.

How the media reported the story

“How the fastest ever Ironman shook off a broken neck to keep on running” – The Telegraph, 2 March 2018

“You MUST watch it. Essential viewing, fantastically produced” – TRI247

“On release film about Ironman pro Tim Don’s remarkable recovery
from a fractured neck”
– 220 Triathlon

“Tim defied the odds once more, winning at Ironman 70.30 Costa Rica. Amazing doesn’t cover it.” – Red Bull Bulletin

“At On, we take pride in sponsoring not just athletes, but their human spirit,” says Olivier Bernhard” – Triradar

“Being on that start line means everything. I’m racing for myself and my family.” – The Sun Online