Big 5 Sporting Goods has signed on as a sponsor of the Honda LA Marathon presented by K-Swiss.

“We like the direction the race has taken over the last two years,” said Rick Gridley, Big 5 Sporting Goods Public Affairs Director. “Introducing the scenic Stadium to the Sea course and infusing fun into the time-honored commitment to fitness is a hit with Los Angeles-area runners.”

Big 5 will be the race's Official Sporting Goods Retailer and the title sponsor of the popular 5K race held on the day before the Marathon itself. The 2011 “LA Big 5K” will be held at 8 a.m. on March 19 on a loop course beginning and ending close to the massive Honda LA Marathon Expo at Dodger Stadium, with more than 4,000 runners expected to participate. Registration is available online at or through a link available at

In addition, Big 5 will have a featured presence at the Expo itself on March 18-19, on the Stadium to the Sea course via prominent signage and in Santa Monica at the Finish Line Festival. Co-promotions between the organizers and Big 5 are now in development.

“We are excited to welcome Big 5 Sporting Goods into the Honda LA Marathon family,” said Dave Klewan, LA MARATHON LLC Partnerships Director. “It's a great opportunity for us to partner with a brand with such a long-standing connection to Los Angeles. We look forward to many years of staging the LA Big 5K at Dodger Stadium together and elevating this event to be a signature part of the Honda LA Marathon.”

Although it has grown to 396 stores in 12 Western states, Big 5 is — at its core — a California company, beginning with five stores in Los Angeles, Burbank, Glendale, Inglewood and San Jose in 1955.

“As a neighborhood sporting goods retailer, we're very proud of our close ties to our local communities, and this marathon is an event that has truly captivated people throughout the region,” said Big 5 Vice President Pete Mulvaney. “We're looking forward to working with the Honda LA Marathon to become an even bigger part of the running community in Southern California and helping people reach their goals for fitness and value.”