Gdynia [Poland], July 24 (ANI): World Athletics and the Local Organising Committee of the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020 have launched a new initiative - a virtual mass race on October 17, the same day when the world's elite runners will compete for the championship.
The aim is to encourage runners all around the world to run a half marathon wherever they are on October 17.
"It is important to clarify this does not mean that the 'real' mass race we have planned in Gdynia will not take place. The virtual competition is an addition to our event. We just want to enable the global running community to be with us on October 17 and join the biggest half marathon in history," Michal Drelich, Head of the LOC said in a release.
Intense efforts have been made to ensure the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020 - including the mass race - can be held in 2020. The final decision will be taken by the end of August.
However, amateur runners who have previously registered for the mass race in Gdynia can already opt to switch to virtual competition, keeping all the benefits from the real mass race, including an Asics t-shirt, an official backpack and a uniquely designed finisher medal.
The idea behind the virtual run is far more universal, involving the global running community. As the event's official motto says: All you need is running.
World Athletics president Sebastian Coe has invited runners around the world to participate in this virtual event.
"As a runner, I've been delighted to see so many more people take up or return to running to maintain their fitness in the challenging circumstances we have all faced due to the pandemic this year," Coe said. "Having a goal is always good motivation to keep fit and I hope that runners around the globe will join in and take the challenge of running a half marathon wherever they may be on October 17," Coe said. (ANI)