8 finisher’s awards you need in your collection

A rock, a mason jar, and a horse shoe – these are the finisher’s medals really worth running for!
By Alison Mann

Sure, it’s the taking part that counts. But after finishing a race isn’t it awesome when you are presented with a super-cool medal? Can't just be us, can it?

We’ve found the best, most unique, race medals out there – including a rock and a Scottish cooking implement.

Now, go forth and run – and make sure you get your finisher's medal!

Feeling inspired? Wings For Life World Run will take place around the world on May 8, 2016. Find a location near you.

More: This guy ran 5,000km around the block

The handmade wonder

The unique Stumpy's Marathon finishers award - it is made by hand
The unique Stumpy's Marathon finishers award © Frank Lenik

What: The Stumpy’s rock
Next race: This year it was September 13, 2015
Which race: Trail Dawgs Stumpy’s Marathon, Newark, USA
Covet factor: 10

This marathon is well known for being a super-friendly race and a real runner centred race. Perhaps you won’t get a PB on account of the undulating, muddy terrain, but you are guaranteed a lot of fun. And the medal? A rock, with a sticker on top, handmade by the race organisers!

The race with a difference

What: A horse shoe
Which race: Bird-in-Hand Half Marathon, Pennsylvania, USA
Next race: This year it was September 11, 2015
Covet factor: 9

Finishers at this race are presented with a horse shoe medal – definitely unique. Before all that though, they run through the farmlands of the Amish Country with local families staffing the water stations and supporting runners all the way. The pacers are also traditional Amish buggies. The marathon is part of a weekend of events so it’s definitely one to hit.

All-natural medal

This medal is given to those who finish the Oak Barrel Half Marathon in Lnychburg
The Oak Barrel Half finishers medal © Oak Barrel Half Marathon

What: Wooden medal
Which race: Oak Barrel Half Marathon, Lynchburg, USA
Next race: April, 2, 2016
Covet factor: 8

This race is organised by the small Mach Tenn Running Club in Tennessee. It features a steep incline called Whisky Hill about four miles into the run. It’s not for the faint-hearted! You are rewarded with a pretty cool, wooden medal for your efforts – definitely one to add to the collection.

The grand award

This medal is given out to those who finish Portland Marathon
The medal given out after Portland Marathon © Portland Marathon

What: A rather grand medal
Which race: Portland Marathon
Next race: Just missed this year’s on October 4, 2015
Covet factor: 7

This race really goes all out on its goody bag. Alongside the medal, which will make you feel like you’ve been given a Knighthood, you are also gifted a tree seedling. The goodies also include a collectible coin, pendant of the medal, a Portland rose and lots of food at the finish line. There’s also a great route, and lots of entertainment on the way.

The kitchen implement

The spurtle presented after the Perth Kilt Run, Canada
The spurtle presented after the Perth Kilt Run

What: A spurtle
Which race: Perth Kilt Run, Ontario, Canada
Next race: June 24-26, 2016
Covet factor: 10

The main attraction of this race is that participants run in Scottish traditional dress – the kilt. The event has four races, a ‘Royal Mile’, 5K, half marathon and a full marathon. This year finishers were presented with a Spurtle – a Scottish cooking implement used to stir porridge – definitely something you won’t receive often!

The huge medal

The medal given out after the Little Rock Marathon is one of the biggest in the world
The medal given out after the Little Rock Marathon © Little Rock Marathon

What: Huge medal, weighs 3lb, 1.1oz
Which race: Little Rock Marathon, Arkansas, USA
Next race: March 5-6, 2016
Covet factor: 7

This behemoth of a medal is presented to those who finished the Little Rock Marathon, Arkansas. It’s a popular medal – but just make sure you don’t wear it running – it weighs over 3lbs.

The collectible

Part of the medal given out to those finishing Spartan races
You can collect the Spartan medal pieces © Spartan Race, Inc./davegreenphoto.com

What: Spartan Trifecta
Which race: Finish one of each Spartan distance in a calendar year
Next race: Check the website for 2015/16 races
Covet factor: 8

Get a piece of the medal for each distance – sprint, super and beast – in one year and you can make up the Trifecta. Getting all three is something to be proud of!

The useful award

The mason jar given to finishers of the Hatfield McCoy Marathon
Show off while you store

What: A delightfully hipster mason jar
Which race: Hatfield McCoy Marathon, Williamson, W.Virginia, USA
Next race: June 11, 2016
Covet factor: 9

This race started from humble beginnings in 2000 with just 13 competitors, and it now welcomes over 1,000. The marathon travels through two states, West Virginia and Kentucky. Finishers are given a cool medal and mason jar.


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