This past weekend, race organizers of the Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon Madness offered a fully-connected race using RaceJoy – not just for the participants and spectators, but for the race operations team as well.
This was the first time the Wrightsville Beach Marathon used RaceJoy and people fully embraced the new technology – close to 2,400 people used RaceJoy’s interactive race day features and more than 800 participants and operations personnel were tracked through their phones on race day!
Even though some users had a little hesitation using RaceJoy for the first time, like Gary (below), the response was overwhelmingly positive!
This Saturday I ran the Wrightsville Beach Marathon. Leading up to the race, I was a little annoyed to hear that all tracking would be done with RaceJoy via smart phones. This annoyance came from the fact that I never run with a phone, just my GPS watch. My wife convinced me to take my phone so that she could track me.
I honestly couldn’t have been happier after realizing what a great app this is! It wasn’t even until during the race that I realized. My friend kept saying “your phone is talking?” I had the volume down, so I turned it up and enjoyed the mileage updates.
But the key moment for me, was around mile 18-19. I was struggling. My running buddies had pushed on as they are faster than me and I was not in a good place. I didn’t even know that messages could be sent through the app, let alone be read out to you. At this low point in the race, a message was read out to me “Don’t quit Daddy! I love you” from my 11-year old daughter, 30 seconds later another message “Go Daddy, Go!” From my 7-year old daughter Anja.
These messages brought a tear to my eyes. But they also gave me to strength I needed at exactly the time I needed it! I went on to finish my first marathon.
Thank you RaceJoy. – Gary D.
Thank you Gary for sharing your story! This is exactly why we created RaceJoy – to connect family and friends and to support you through those rough moments!
Kelley and her friends participated in the Wrightsville Beach Half Marathon together and also used RaceJoy so their family and friends could see their progress along the way.
My name is Kelley and myself and two of my friends, Emma and Katie trained for the Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Half Marathon together and used the RaceJoy app during the race. Our friends and family loved being able to see our progress along the way and send us cheers! We also liked being able to find each other’s location using the app and know where each of us were. It’s a really great app!!
Emma’s boyfriend, Tyler (who is also my boyfriend Matt’s oldest brother) lost his vision to Retinitis Pigmentosa and completed his 5th full marathon that day!! He raised over $2,000 for The Foundation Fighting Blindness. Tyler and Matt’s parents completed the full marathon as well! It was an amazing day! – Kelley M.
Over the course of the race weekend, close to 33,000 progress alerts were issued giving people real-time progress updates at every mile! The updates included information like current location, pace, and estimated finish time. Also, 5,500 cheers were sent on race day connecting supporting family and friends with participants real-time as they completed the course.
Race Operations Live Tracking
Race organizers took things further by using RaceJoy to track the race operations team from the app and through RaceJoy’s Race Day Monitoring System. Race personnel could quickly see the location of rest of the team while they were working the race. Plus, the race used RaceJoy’s web console monitoring system to see a global view of operations along with the race participants using RaceJoy. The monitoring console also allowed staff to Send-a-Message to operations personnel like the race director using text to speech technology.
The Race Organizers chose to use a unique bib number (9999) just for the race operations team. This made it super easy for the team to find one another in the app where they look up one bib number versus searching for individual names or code names. Most used the function they served as their name such as “Lead Men Half Marathon” and “Landfall/ Military Van”. This further simplifies things for everyone to see at-a-glance the status of the various roles of the team.
For more information about using RaceJoy for race operations, please see this recent Webinar.
The Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon Madness offers its participants a fast, flat and notorious course for personal bests with a peak elevation of only 32 feet. From first timers to veterans, the event weekend attracts a variety of runners! With a glimpse of what Wrightsville Beach and Wilmington have to offer, the course starts at the beach and runs through Landfall and finishes at UNCW Campus.
We are glad we were able to be part of this fully connected and lively race day experience that offers something for everyone! Thank you, finishers, for using RaceJoy and for sharing your personal stories. Special thanks to race organizers for embracing new technology and helping to change the race experience!