Gannett’s Rugged Races subsidiary to host virtual runs during pandemic
Race themes include Wonder Woman, Scooby-Doo and Batman
While large events have been canceled amid the pandemic, Rugged Races, a subsidiary of McLean-based Gannett Co. Inc. (the nation’s largest newspaper publisher), announced Monday it has signed a licensing agreement with Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. to produce virtual runs with superhero and comic book characters.
“Unlike a traditional road race where thousands of people run the same route at the same time, a virtual run allows individuals to run whenever and wherever they want,” says a Rugged Races release. “Although each participant runs the same distance, they create their ideal route wherever they live, choose a day to run it, and then submit their finish time online.”
The DC Wonder Woman Virtual Run will be the first of the virtual runs. For the virtual run, participants purchase a kit including a jacket, a tote bag, wrist cuffs, a medal and a running bib. Distances are reported on an honors system, but runners are encouraged to track their distance and time using a GPS application. Amazon.com Inc. and McLean-based USA Today are partners of the virtual run.
Registration is open for runners through Aug. 23, and participants will have until Nov. 30 to complete the race.
“We could all use a little motivation to stay physically active and socially engaged with each other during times like these,” Brad Scudder, Rugged Races senior vice president, said in a statement. “We’re thrilled to be working with Warner Bros. to offer people engaging opportunities to be active wherever they are, starting with a virtual run presented by Amazon to celebrate a heroic symbol of strength, compassion, and hope — Wonder Woman.”
Other upcoming races will feature Warner Bros. characters including Batman and Scooby-Doo. Rugged Races typically hosts more than 100 events annually with more than 1.5 million participants.