Dixons Carphone Race to the Stones has been awarded the accolade of “Best Use of Employee Engagement in Sponsorship” at the highly prestigious European Sponsorship Awards, in a gala ceremony that took place in London last week at Café de Paris.

Dixons Carphone’s sponsorship of Race to the Stones, which is part of the Threshold Trail Series, is a 100km ultra marathon that sees people run, jog or walk along the Ridgeway in Oxfordshire to the Avebury Stone Circle in Wiltshire.

Dixons Carphone Race to the Stones beat off strong competition from several high-profile in class sponsorship industry campaigns to be crowned the winners.

The shortlist, which was announced in November last year, included Cadbury and their sponsorship of the Premier League, FedEx- the official sponsor of the UEFA Europa League, M&S and Macmillan World’s Biggest Coffee Morning Partnership and beST’s be Stronger Together campaign.

A team of judges drawn from the wider marketing industry from countries including Belgium, Finland, Ireland, Norway and the UK chose Dixons Carphone Race to the Stones as the winner, rewarding them for their best-in-class sponsorship campaign at last week’s ceremony.

An ESA spokesperson said: “The judges were impressed with the process to select the partnership with Race to the Stones and the way the campaign is activated inside the business. The event has now clearly become a critical part of their internal employee engagement programme, with hundreds of staff members getting involved. The outcome is a number of solid tangible and intangible returns to the business.

The ESA Awards are an annual celebration for best in class campaigns that cover the entire spectrum of sponsorship disciplines. The ESA Awards remain the only honour to acknowledge outstanding work and industry excellence by sponsorship professionals right across Europe.

Kesah Trowell of Dixons Carphone Race to the Stones said: “We’re absolutely delighted to win this award and honoured to be recognised for our employee engagement initiatives through our in-class sponsorship of the Race to the Stones event. The sponsorship and partnership Dixons Carphone have created with Race to the Stones continues to go from strength to strength.

“Its impact delivers meaningful results for our employees, it has improved their physical and mental wellbeing and as a result our employees have raised over £1.5 million for good causes.”

She added: “It’s an incredible achievement and testament to everybody involved who has helped make the sponsorship of the race so successful over the last seven years.”

Since its inception, Dixons Carphone Race to the Stones, part of the Threshold Trail Series, which also includes Race to the King and HEINEKEN Race to the Tower, has seen over 1,000 employees from Dixons Carphone take part in the event.

This year Dixons Carphone Race to the Stones will celebrate its seventh year when 2,500 runners and walkers will once again follow the route along The Ridgeway, which is recognised as the oldest path in the UK.

From the start at Lewknor in Oxfordshire, the route passes up and along the high ground South West to the Thames crossing at Goring. From this point it rises up onto the North Wessex Downs passing golden fields before the iconic finish between the towering stones of Avebury- the largest Neolithic stone circle in Europe.

For more information about the race visit: https://www.racetothestones.com/