WOBURN, MA — Verizon Wireless today announced that is has signed on as the official telecommunications sponsor of the Boston Marathon®. The Boston Marathon, organized by the Boston Athletic Association, is the world's oldest and most prestigious annual marathon.
"Verizon Wireless' involvement with the Marathon is very well timed," said Guy Morse, Executive Director of the Boston Athletic Association. "We're constantly increasing the use of technology to ensure the safety and accuracy of our race, and this year, we know we've selected a superior telecommunications partner."
While financial terms are not being disclosed, the three-year contract is comprised of a monetary sponsorship and the donation of Push to Talk phones, extra batteries, and accessories. Push to Talk from Verizon Wireless delivers a 'walkie-talkie' feature allowing customers to connect directly to other Verizon Wireless Push to Talk users with a simple push of a button on a Push to Talk capable handset.
In addition, Verizon Wireless is donating wireless air cards, which provide high-speed wireless access to the Internet using Verizon Wireless' NationalAccess network. Wireless access will be used to relay the real-time posting of runner position and time at each marker along the marathon route. Runners this year will include Verizon Wireless New England Region President, Robert F. Stott, who is running the Boston Marathon for the ninth time.
"The Boston Marathon marks the start of spring in New England as it welcomes visitors from around the world," said Stott. "As an avid runner, I actively train year-round for the 'Bos,' but this year, the event is of greater importance as I'm not just running for myself, but for a company I've been associated with for more than 37 years."
To ensure that the network is prepared for increased usage during the marathon, Verizon Wireless' true life 'test guys' will test network coverage along the marathon race route and throughout Boston and metro west. On race day, the company's mobile "V-Team" will provide free wireless phone service for runners, visitors and race fans, so that everyone stays connected for security, safety and celebratory reasons.
Verizon Wireless will also participate in the annual Sports and Fitness Expo being held at the World Trade Center Boston on April 17-18, 2004 from 9:00 6:00 p.m., but for those interested in checking out the newest available wireless solutions, the company will host three tents along the race route on Marathon Monday, April 19th.
About Boston Athletic Association
Established in 1887, the Boston Athletic Association has been the organizer of the Boston Marathon since the race's inception in 1897. More than 20,000 official participants will run in the 108th Boston Marathon on Patriots' Day, a holiday in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The B.A.A. is a non-profit organization committed to promoting fitness through athletics throughout the year.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless is the nation's leading provider of wireless communications. The company has the largest nationwide wireless voice and data network and 37.5 million customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To receive broadcast-quality video footage of Verizon Wireless operations, log onto www.thenewsmarket.com.