Since the original formation of On Athletics Club (OAC) back in August 2020, the power of the team has grown. On’s athlete management committee, together with Coach Dathan Ritzenhein, originally selected eight elite athletes as OAC’s founding members, expecting that they would each see beyond individual performance. Instead, they are achieving continued success by running for the team and for each other. The journey of this mutual trust and unique fellowship is now being shown in a new short video presentation, released as members of the team compete at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon.
Swiss sportswear company, On, presents “Run For Each Other” – an original docu-style behind-the-scenes story written by Oliver Le Vitre, and directed by Mischa Meyer, in collaboration with Levity Creative, giving viewers a unique glimpse into the formidable team spirit and shared values held by members in one of today’s better professional running clubs. Filmed on and off the track across the U.S., Run For Each Other presents the collective ideology that no matter how good of a runner you are, you can always be better with a team — a continued mantra held high by OAC that has led to widespread international success across the group’s multiple track disciplines.
The 90-second video captures individual members of OAC running solo, in the countryside and under the floodlights of an empty track, while the narrated storyline presents the concept of the search for an athlete who may like to experience their journey alone and in solitude. Short video vignettes show OAC team members training on the treadmill, in the weights room, and receiving treatment therapies, with an eventual transition to video of the group running together, showing their solidarity and friendship. Video narration evokes the unfruitful search of an athlete who cannot be found experiencing their plight in seclusion, revealing how on the path towards success, although they may compete individually, these OAC athletes are on their journey together as a TEAM.
“Run For Each Other” is about the true power and spirit of “Team” and how teamwork is the embodiment of success,” says Feliciano Robayna, executive producer and head of sports marketing at On. “Our OAC athletes are on a journey to the World Championships and know they are better together—having learned that group camaraderie is a key ingredient towards fulfilling optimum performance under pressure. Each athlete knows their fellow team members have their back, not only during competition but off the track during training as well as in their personal life. This is the true essence of how teamwork makes the dream work — a core philosophy held by our company and management.”
On Athletics Club is a group of elite middle and long-distance runners selected for the company’s first professional talent development and management center, housing a world-class residential training facility that fosters a hand-picked troop of internationals from the world of track. Based in Boulder, Colorado, three-time U.S Olympian and NCAA title-holder, Dathan Ritzenhein, is the coach at On Athletics Club, after retiring from competition and now charged with the club’s ongoing recruitment and developmental program. OAC currently has 12 members on its roster.
Leading the pack as a University of Colorado graduate is Minnesota native and bona fide All-American athlete, Joe Klecker, a Tokyo 2020 Olympian, PAC-12 champion, 7-time All-American, and 2-time NCAA runner-up in Cross-Country. Wisconsin native and Big Ten title-holder from the University of Wisconsin,
Alicia Monson, is an NCAA indoor 5,000m champion, Milrose Games Champion, and Big Ten record holder in 3,000m.
Michigander, Leah Falland, ran track and cross-country at Michigan State University, where she won two NCAA titles, became captain on the 2014 NCAA Cross Country national championship team, and won over a dozen Big Ten championship titles. Her personal achievements include two-time NCAA Champion for the indoor mile and 3,000m Steeplechase.
Australian athlete Oliver “Ollie” Hoare found his love for athletics while living in Sydney and before being recognized for his talent by the University of Wisconsin, where he was a 1,500m NCAA Champion in 2018, an eight-time All-American and nine-time Big Ten Champion in Cross Country, indoor and outdoor track.
George “Geordie” Beamish is a New Zealander and NAU graduate, with personal achievements that include three-time NCAA Cross Country Team Champion and six-time NCAA All-American.
A 2020 addition to the OAC team, Sage Hurta, is the indoor NCAA mile, 4x All-American and PAC-12 800m champion, who was born in Buffalo, N.Y.
Distance runner and Olympian, Morgan McDonald, started running when he was just eight originally from Sydney, Australia, has already got an impressive list of achievements including four NCAA titles, 2018 Australian 5000m champion, and competing at the Tokyo Olympics.
Spaniard Carmela Cardama Báez picked up medals at regional, national and European championships before moving to the U.S. to compete for the University of Oregon and winning their first title since 1984. Carmela is a NCAA 10k champion, PAC-12 champion, and 5k indoors School record holder.
American middle-distance runner, Yared Nuguse, qualified for the 1500m at the 2020 Summer Olympics with his personal best time of 3:34.68, but did not participate due to a quad injury. His titles include the 1500 meters at the 2019 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships, and on May 13, 2021, Nuguse set the NCAA 1500m record in a time of 3:34.36, which also met the Olympic standard. In February this year, Nuguse set the NCAA indoor 3000m record in a time of 7:38.13 at the BU Valentine Invitational.
In his track career across both the indoor and outdoor seasons, Mario Garcia Romo has won one NCAA title (indoor mile, 2022), finished as an NCAA runner-up twice, earned six First-Team All-America nods, scored 30.25 total NCAA points, won five SEC titles and scored 42.5 points at the SEC Championships. Mario recently became the NCAA runner-up in the men’s 1500m final at the 2022 NCAA Outdoor Championships.
Jonas Raess is a Swiss-born long-distance runner, who competed in the 5000m at the 2020 Summer Olympics. At the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Spring this year (World Indoor Tour Gold Series), Jonas ran a new Swiss record over 3000m in a time of 7:39.49. The old Swiss record was more than 40 years old and was held by the legendary Markus Ryffel. Never before had a Swiss athlete run under 7:40. A week later, Jonas again set a national record in 5000m, with a time of 13:07.95, well below the old indoor Swiss record, also held by Markus Ryffel.
Hailing from Kisii, Kenya, Hellen Obiri is the only woman in history to win world titles in indoor track, outdoor track and cross country, and is the latest addition to On’s athletic roster. Obiri’s many accolades include 5000m Silver Medalist at the 2016 Rio Olympics, back-to-back 5000m World Champion in 2017 and 2019, 5000m Silver Medalist at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, finishing out her track career as the 5000m Silver Medalist at the 2021 Diamond League Final.
OAC athletes competing at the 2022 World Athletics Championships are Oliver Hoare (1500m), Alicia Monson (10,000m), George Beamish (5,000m), Mario Garcia-Romo (1500m), Joe Klecker (10,000m) and Hellen Obiri (10,000m).
Run For Each Other presented by On can now be seen at on-running.com/team-OAC.