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Posted: January 27, 2021:  

(RRW) Athletics: BNAZ Elite & Rudy Project Extend Partnership

From David Monti, @d9monti
© 2021 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved.

(27-Jan) -- Hoka Northern Arizona Elite (NAZ Elite) and the Italian performance eyewear company Rudy Project have renewed their partnership. In a joint announcement yesterday, the two organizations said that Flagstaff-based running team would continue to wear Rudy Project eyewear throughout the Olympic year. Financial terms were not disclosed.

PHOTO: Aliphine Tuliamuk winning the 2020 USA Olympic Team Trials Women's Marathon in Atlanta (photo by Jane Monti for Race Results Weekly)

"Flagstaff is a sunny town and thus sunglasses are an essential piece of equipment for us," said NAZ Elite head coach Ben Rosario through a media release. "So not only does our Rudy Project partnership help our bottom line, it also gives us an advantage in training and racing which is always the most important thing."

The team wore Rudy Project sunglasses during last February's USA Olympic Team Trials Marathon in Atlanta, where Aliphine Tuliamuk won the race wearing Rudy Project Tralyx sunglasses, and her NAZ Elite teammates Steph Bruce and Kellyn Taylor finished sixth and eighth, respectively. At The Marathon Project last month in Chandler, Arizona, seven members of the team wore Rudy Project sunglasses, including top-10 finishers Scott Fauble (fourth), Scott Smith (sixth), and Kellyn Taylor (third).

"Despite the numerous challenges of 2020, NAZ Elite gave the running world hope through amazing performances, fan engagement, and even a thrilling race in The Marathon Project," said Rudy Project sports marketing director Chris Lupo through a statement. "I'm incredibly proud that we are not just renewing, but growing our partnership, particularly during such a challenging year. I'm also excited to watch NAZ Elite runners tear it up in 2021."

Hoka One One, NAZ Elite's primary sponsor, does not make eyewear which allows for the partnership with Rudy Project. The company was founded in Treviso, Italy, in 1985 and the brand has been particularly popular with cyclists and triathletes. Riders for both the Bahrain McLaren and Tibco pro cycling teams use Rudy Project equipment, using both eyewear and helmets.

Rudy Project maintains separate websites for different geographical regions, but all can be accessed via

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