A Different Breed of Races

A Different Breed of Races
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Over the last 5-10 years we’ve seen a number of new race styles hit the running community. From obstacles races and zombie evacuations, to dye splattered t-shirts and glow stick races, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. But now there is a new selection of races pushing the boundaries of ordinary start and finish lines, introducing interesting and fun ways to race.

The Varying Route Race

Sports clothing brand adidas have been making waves with their Boost running shoes since 2012, and to celebrate their latest “greatest running shoe” ever they’re putting on a race with a difference. The Energy Takeover is set after a labyrinth, with runners choosing their own start point and route to the finish. In this 10k like no other, runners can show off their city running style in a race to the finish.

adidas have kept the full details under wraps, but if past adidas events are anything to go by, it’s set to be a really fun race.

Ballot-style entries have now closed (and unfortunately I didn’t get in!), but the race takes part in London on 25th March and you can keep up with it on Twitter using the hashtag #boostlondon.

Energy Takeover

The Multi-Lap Lottery Race

Billed as “the world’s most unfair race” the Bingo Race, dreamed up by ultra-runner and author James Adams, could see you run your balls off. At the start you will be issued with a Bingo card with 3 numbers on it. There is a loop of ~2 miles. You run a loop and then pick a number out of a bag in a Bingo style. If you pick one of your numbers then you cross that off and do another loop. If you pick a number not on your card then you just head back out onto another loop and repeat. You finish the race when you have all 3 of your numbers crossed off. Easy.

You could finish in 6 miles, if you’re extremely lucky, or you could continue until the 10 hour cut-off and still not have all of your numbers.

The race takes place over the weekend of 21st/22nd March and entries are open until this Saturday.

Bingo Race

The Moving Finish Line Worldwide Race

The Red Bull Wings for Life World Run is a race where the finish line chases you. At 35 locations worldwide, on 3rd May 11am UTC, everyone starts running. 30 minutes later the Catcher Car sets off, chasing runners until the last person is left standing. You could finish after 10k, a marathon, or anything in-between. You set the pace and you carry on until the car reaches you! There’s a distance estimator on their website (link to my team page below).

I am running the UK race at Silverstone, you can join my team (even if you’re in another country!) by signing up here. 100% of the entry fee goes to Spinal Cord Research. I’m hoping to finish just over a half marathon – see what you can achieve!

UPDATE: Exciting rumours have now been confirmed that Formula 1 hero David Coulthard will be driving the catcher car at Silverstone!

The Points Accumulator Race

Supported by marathon runner Paula Radcliffe, the Checkpoints Race is another worldwide opportunity; runners create teams of five (or sign-up as individuals and are linked with four other individual runners) and between 11th May-30th August the teams collect Energy Points. At the end of the four-month period the 50 teams from around the world with the most Energy Points are given the chance to take part in a once-in-a-lifetime, all-expenses-paid race in the French Alps. Teams collect Energy Points in three ways:

  • By running – distance, speed and elevation gain all contribute to Energy Points
  • Through the efforts of their supporters who run and add Energy Points to the team’s total
  • By completing Challenges that are communicated to the teams via the downloadable Checkpoints Race app

It is not necessarily the fastest runners who will win a trip to France. A team with many supporters and a determination to complete all the challenges can be at the finale.

A limited number of pre-sale entries are available here.

Checkpoints Race

Do you know of any other interesting race formats out there? Let me know if you are doing/decide to join in any of the above races!

Georgina Spenceley
Georgina Spenceley


  1. Richard Fish
    13th March 2015 / 9:26 am

    Centurion piece of String Race springs to mind.

    • Georgina
      13th March 2015 / 9:37 am

      A friend of mine from running club mentioned that to me last night! I haven’t heard of it before but sounds just as crazy as some of these!

      • 13th March 2015 / 10:58 am

        It’s another James Adams special!

        • Georgina
          13th March 2015 / 10:59 am

          Oh James is an evil bugger isn’t he!

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