The New Boston Marathon Gear Is Getting Mixed Reactions

From ‘disgusting’ to ‘awesome,’ people have varying opinions about the new gear.

Photo Provided By Adidas

Photo Provided By Adidas

“Disappointed,” “disgusted,” and “borderline nauseating” were just some of the comments people made when Adidas unveiled their new line of Boston Marathon gear on Tuesday.

The vitriol on the Adidas website, which showed off an apparel collection ranging from stretchy running pants to the iconic “celebration jackets,” started pouring in almost immediately, mostly with complaints about the color—a bright orange dubbed “Solar Zest” matched with teal lines along the sleeves—as well as the overall design.

Still raw from the mayhem unleashed at last year’s race, where three people were killed and more than 260 others were injured, it seems both runners and people planning on sitting along the race route’s sidelines were hoping the jackets would either incorporate colors from last year or have some other sort of celebratory color combination.

“In a year in which the Boston Marathon will be more meaningful to a ton of people than ever before, this is awful. Honoring the B.A.A. with a traditional blue and yellow, or even going with red, white, and blue would have been fitting. Instead, we get what looks like Miami Marlins outerwear. Terrible,” said John B., who identified himself as a runner from Boston, on the Adidas website.

John’s dislike for the combination of oranges with the dark and light blues was fairly tame compared with other observations made after the outerwear was revealed.

While the hues are different from what people may have expected, Adidas was sure to pay homage to the people who participated in the race, or were hurt in the blast in 2013. The collar of the jacket reads, “Boston Runs as One,” according to the Adidas website. The colors of the gear change from year to year, and while a Boston Athletic Association spokesman did not immediately return calls to explain how the schemes are selected in coordination with the athletic company, people should have expected to see a variation of styles for this year’s race.

Here are some of the other comments from people who aren’t loving the new gear:

“So very disappointed in this year’s jacket. What was the thought process here? This is a [color] that a slight fraction of any population would truly enjoy. With these [colors], the blue trim would have been much, much better as base. A patriotic theme would have made the most sense, but that is clearly not happening. Oh well, Adidas and BAA will be disappointed by sales. Ultimately, though, the runners are the losers as this race will not be commemorated about town with the normal jacket enthusiasm.”

“Was really hoping for a Red, White, and Blue themed jacket.”

“That orange looks like Cheetos dust.”

“Between the bright safety orange and the weird striping across the shoulder and back, the jacket seems out of place in “celebrating” such a classy and prestigious event such as the Boston Marathon.”

“Wow. So disappointed in the line for this year. Considering all of the hype and attention and emotion that will surround 2014’s race, this is a major letdown.”

“I am very disappointed in this color choice! I have heard from several runners who agree and I don’t expect they will have great sales on this. This was not every well thought out.”

“What a disappointment! Ugly. Unfortunately, Adidas will sell a ton of them because of the prestige of the event and “showing your colors” by wearing the jacket. A special edition would have been nice. Nothing special about this jacket.”

“We will run with remembrance, celebration, triumph and defiance. Too bad this year’s jacket will not reflect that.”

Yikes.

But not everyone was harping on the orange jackets and striped pants. Some people really enjoy the new look, and had a lot of positive things to say about the design for the 2014 race:

“Nice product—will be tuff to top it. Can’t wait to wear it on my trip to Boston in April.” 

“Sharp and true to size.”

“It’s less about the color and more about the experience.”

Now that’s more insightful.

So, what do you think? Weigh in and tell us whether Adidas and the B.A.A. did a good job —or if they totally missed the mark?

POLL: Do you like the new Boston Marathon gear?


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  • hesthewiz

    Orange is the new black this year ;) I see lots of runners in dayglow these days and it seems to be the trend and likely why Adidas selected that color. I have a hunch they selected the color a year ago and there was no going back and they are likely stuck with it. I ran the marathon last year and have a lot of emotion surrounding the event this year. For me personally, the new gear does not even come close to capturing the emotions I feel.

  • Enrique Murillo

    I was expecting a traditional, classy jacket (blue and yellow). The design in the back almost disappears in the orange cloth, when the logo should be visually attractive. I think Addidas should redesign it. We pay for it. I was thinking on buying one, and now I would not, even though April 21 is my birthdate.

    • Joeblow6868

      Check out the other jackets from Adidas. They have blue ones.

  • NCRunningGal

    UGLY! Having run in 2000 and 2006, I was soooo looking forward to joining the marathon community in honoring the people of Boston and having a jacket to remember the experience. No way I want to purchase this… what an ugly color combo. Neither the classic dark blue/gold OR the lighter blue/yellow. What were they thinking?? PLEASE offer the traditional option! :-)

  • Joeblow6868

    In looking closer at this, it doesn’t even really seem to be a “running jacket”. No venting, no reflective trim, not a tech fabric.

    Looks more like a “commemorative windbreaker” than anything really designed for running.

    On the Adidas site, they have other actual running jackets. Check out the “Smarter” one. It’s cheaper too at $85.