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FALMOUTH, MA. (May 8, 2015) – This year’s New Balance Falmouth Road Race will be making history. For the first time, remote participants from around the world will be able to take part in an interactive race day experience, race officials announced today.
The Falmouth Road Race has partnered with Outside Interactive, a Hopkinton, MA-based developer of forward motion video software technology for treadmill runners, to create a digital race-day experience for runners who want to officially participate in the August 16th race, but didn’t make the field or can’t make the live event.
Runners will take part in the 43rd New Balance Falmouth Road Race remotely by utilizing Outside Interactive’s Virtual Runner app and custom HD course video download, which they access and view on their treadmill via an iPad (iOS) or tablet (Android). Remote participants will be able to actually experience and see the course at their exact pace, as it was filmed from a runner’s point of view, including all the electricity and excitement of race day.
“For runners who want to be a part of the Falmouth Road Race but didn’t get in, or find themselves stationed overseas or otherwise geographically challenged, this is the next best thing to being there,” said Gary McNamee, founder and president of Outside Interactive. “We’re thrilled that Falmouth recognizes the value in offering this new, forward-thinking opportunity to displaced runners.”
What’s included and how it works
Entrants will register in the same fashion as the live event, but use the “Remote Participant” option. A $40 registration fee provides remote participants with the following:
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- Downloadable Virtual Runner app for iPad® or Android® tablet. (Virtual Runner does not yet support smartphones)
- Downloadable version of the New Balance Falmouth Road Race interactive race course video. (Falmouth Course Preview)
- Downloadable custom bib which can be printed and used on race day for uploading selfies to the race app and social sites.
- Onetime activation code that will track your time for your participation in the race.
- Downloadable Official Finisher’s Certificate upon completion, transmission and receipt of your results by the race.
- Official recording of your results on the race website in a new “Remote Participant” category.
- Participants in the continental U.S. will be mailed a New Balance Falmouth Road Race re-usable gift bag, official coffee mug, official race magazine and official New Balance Falmouth Road Race keychain
- Remote participants also will be automatically entered in a special lottery for a complimentary entry to run the event live in 2016.
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Remote Participants can utilize the Virtual Runner app and interactive HD race course video to train with and to become familiar with running the course on a treadmill before race day.
The Virtual Runner app allows the user to adjust the video speed to the exact pace of their effort on any treadmill. Then, on race day, or the week leading up to the live event if more time is needed, the user can activate the special code to have their run recorded and included in official race results. Upon completion of the race, the user will be prompted to send their results to the race website, an automated process through the app (a WiFi connection will be needed for this transmission).
Registration for remote entrants will begin on May 8th at https://register.racepartner.com/FalmouthRoadRace/ following online registration for Falmouth residents (May 1-7) and the lottery for non-residents (May 8-17), which fills the iconic American road race to its 12,800 capacity each year.
“We view this as a win-win for the New Balance Falmouth Road Race and running enthusiasts all over the region and the world,” said Scott Ghelfi, race president. “Our race is extremely popular and we know there are many people who want to run but can’t. Giving them the opportunity to officially be a part of the race and run the course, in a virtual way, from anywhere – something that’s never been done before – is exciting to us.”
Outside Interactive shot the Falmouth Road Race virtual-course video in HD, using its state-of-the-art cameras, filming and editing techniques. The scenic, seven-mile seaside course was shot from the runner’s point of view and includes all landmarks and distance markers in addition to the sights and sounds of the actual race day experience on idyllic Cape Cod.
The New Balance Falmouth Road Race is the first of a number of races Outside Interactive will be working with to offer a new official Remote Participation Category. Others events include the Big Sur Half Marathon, Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run, World’s Best 10K and Donna’s Run for Breast Cancer, McNamee said.
The interactive videos enable treadmill runners to enjoy or train on scenic runs from their treadmill when inclement weather, travel or deployment prevents being on the course itself.
“Virtual runs, shadow or satellite races are nothing new, but what we’re doing is,” McNamee said. “We’re using the technology we have developed to bring the race course to the world by offering an interactive digital experience. Treadmill runners can see the actual course as it was filmed on race day with spectators and volunteers cheering you on as if you are winning the race, and all at your exact pace. What would otherwise be a boring run on the treadmill at home or at the gym now becomes an exciting, engaging interactive experience which is acknowledged by the race.”
He added, “Enabling runners to enter a road race from afar is the future. Whether it’s a road race that sells out quickly or wants to expand its field but can’t due to town or safety restrictions, allowing remote entries is a great way to get more people involved, promote sponsors and raise more funds for a charity – without the logistics of expanding the field on site.”
About Outside Interactive
Outside Interactive is a Hopkinton, MA developer of Virtual Runner for Windows®, Virtual Runner for iPad® and Android®, revolutionary patent pending forward motion technology featuring famous race courses, popular running routes and scenic destinations, all shot in HD from a runner’s point of view. The company was founded in 2011 by Gary McNamee, a lifelong Boston resident, avid runner and serial entrepreneur. He developed Virtual Runner after becoming bored on the treadmill and frustrated with not being able to train properly in New England’s unpredictable and often harsh weather. For more information, visit www.outsideinteractive.com or find Outside Interactive on Facebook and Twitter.
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About Falmouth Road Race
The New Balance Falmouth Road Race was established in 1973 and has become one of the premier running events of the summer season. Each year the race draws an international field of Olympians, elite and recreational runners out to enjoy the iconic 7-mile seaside course. The non-profit Falmouth Road Race organization is committed to promoting health and fitness through community programs and philanthropic giving.
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