the ultra x vir­tu­al race world series

fre­quently asked ques­tions

What is the Ultra X Vir­tu­al Race World Series?
Unpre­ced­en­ted times call for unpre­ced­en­ted meas­ures. If we’re not going to be allowed to race in real­ity for the next month or so, then we’ll race VIRTUALLY!

Social dis­tan­cing does not mean you are alone and self-isol­a­tion does not mean that you can­not race. The Ultra X Vir­tu­al Race World Series allows run­ners from all over the world to come togeth­er and con­nect for an amaz­ing cause. Over the next month, we are going to be host­ing four vir­tu­al races (three qual­i­fy­ing rounds and a grand final) of vary­ing lengths and award­ing points for tak­ing part in each.

Register online and tune in to our social feeds to fol­low.

Find out more here.

How do I take part?

Register

To take part you must first register online.

You will have the option to pur­chase entry to one, two or all three qual­i­fy­ing races (entry to the final — if you make it there! — is free).

Any­one can pay to enter any of the qual­i­fy­ing races. There are no oth­er require­ments to enter.

Entry is £5 per event (or £12 for all three) and 50% of entry fees will go towards the NHS Char­it­ies Togeth­er COVID-19 appeal.

Upon regis­tra­tion you will also have the option to pur­chase a medal, a lim­ited edi­tion Vir­tu­al Race World Series t-shirt, and an Ultra X cap.

Once you have registered, you will be added to the race start list and assigned a bib num­ber, which you will keep through­out the World Series. You do not have to wear it while racing (although we do encour­age it!)

We will be send­ing out new bib num­bers (and social media assets) every three work­ing days. Please be patient if you do not get yours straight away upon regis­tra­tion. Our design­er doesn’t like to rush things…

On the day

Vir­tu­al run­ning works the same as any oth­er type of run­ning but the dif­fer­ence is that the race can be run at any loc­a­tion, at any pace, inside on a tread­mill, or out­side any­where in the world!

Once you have entered, all you have to do is run or walk the dis­tance (8, 15 and/or 19 km) and send us evid­ence that you have done it. That is all!

The link for upload­ing your com­ple­tion time will be sent to you upon regis­tra­tion. Please ensure that evid­ence dis­plays total time taken from start to fin­ish, includ­ing any pauses (not just mov­ing time!!). If you are sub­mit­ting via Strava, the easi­est way to do this is to make sure you tag the activ­ity as a “race”.

The screen­shot sub­mit­ted must show “elapsed time” and not just mov­ing time.

In order to have your res­ult nor­mal­ized and com­pared to all oth­er res­ults, you must ensure that your neg­at­ive net elev­a­tion loss is no more than 10%.

For example, if your run has 100 feet of incline, it should have no more than 110 feet of decline.

The easi­est way of ensur­ing that you don’t break the rule here is to start and fin­ish with­in at the the same place! See “How should I plan my route” FAQ below for fur­ther inform­a­tion on this.

Please note that if you are par­ti­cip­at­ing on a tread­mill and wish to be con­sidered for the final, we will need evid­ence of you actu­ally run­ning on the tread­mill (not just a pic­ture of the screen at the end). We will be host­ing a Zoom call at 13:00 BST on each race day which any­one par­ti­cip­at­ing at this time can dial into. Altern­at­ively, you can film your­self doing the run and send us a time lapse video. If you are plan­ning on doing this, you must con­tact us 24 hours in advance of the race in ques­tion at contact@ultra-x.co with the sub­ject “Tread­mill Vir­tu­al Race”. If you aren’t too fussed on mak­ing the final then no wor­ries!

Par­ti­cipants may com­pete at any time that suits them provided it is on the same date as the race in their respect­ive time zone.

Time sub­mis­sions must be made with­in 24 hours of the race date. Late sub­mis­sions will not be con­sidered in the res­ults.

When are the races?
There are three qual­i­fy­ing races which can be entered by any­body. There will also be a final lim­ited to 110 com­pet­it­ors which is invit­a­tion only. Please see below for times and dis­tances. Com­pet­it­ors can do the race at any time on the below dates.

Qual­i­fi­er 1 — Sat­urday 2nd May — 8km

Qual­i­fi­er 2 — Sat­urday 16th May — 15km

Qual­i­fi­er 3 — Sat­urday 30th May — 19km

Grand Final — Sat­urday 13th June — dis­tance to be announced the night before the race

When does regis­tra­tion close?
You can enter one, two or all three races on ini­tial regis­tra­tion here. Altern­at­ively you can enter one at a time (e.g. enter race one before 1st May, and then enter race two on 4th May).

Each race regis­tra­tion will close at 12:00 BST the day before the race begins. As demon­strated below:

Race 1 regis­tra­tion closes 12:00 BST 1st May

Race 2 regis­tra­tion closes 12:00 BST 15th May

Race 3 regis­tra­tion closes 12:00 BST 29th May

The entry fee is pay­able upon regis­tra­tion. This is non-refund­able.

What can I win and how?

Bey­ond the reward of unity, spir­it and the feel­ing of togeth­er­ness earned from tak­ing part in the Ultra X Vir­tu­al Race World Series, there will be some ser­i­ous prizes up for grabs.

Prize money in the final will be alloc­ated as fol­lows:

  • Over­all male 1st, 2nd, 3rd pos­i­tion. (£200, £100, £50)
  • Over­all female 1st, 2nd, 3rd pos­i­tion (£200, £100, £50)

Top three in each of the below fields:

  • Male 18–25 (£100, £75 and £30)
  • Female 18–25 (£100, £75 and £30)
  • Male 26–39 (£100, £75 and £30)
  • Female 26–39 (£100, £75 and £30)
  • Male 40+ (£100, £75 and £30)
  • Female 40+ (£100, £75 and £30)

Wild­card: £1,000

Yes, you read that cor­rectly! One per­son picked at ran­dom who com­pletes the final will win £1,000! It doesn’t mat­ter how fast you are. If you are on the start line, you have a 1 in 110 chance of win­ning a grand!

Medals

If you don’t make it to the final, don’t worry! Every­one who par­ti­cip­ates in a race will be able to pur­chase a medal. Medals will be dis­trib­uted at the end of the World Series. Depend­ing on how many races you do, you will get a dif­fer­ent col­our rib­bon.

1 race = White

2 races = Bronze

3 races = Sil­ver

Grand Final = Gold

Also, thanks to our part­ners at Arc’teryx we’ll be pick­ing one per­son at each event to win an amaz­ing bundle of prizes.

Races 1–3: Arc’teryx SWAG bundle for a ran­dom win­ner in each race — Arc’teryx T-shirt, Arc’teryx Nal­gene Water Bottle, Arc’teryx Note­book
Final- An Arc’teryx Champion’s Trail Bundle, includ­ing an Arc’teryx Cap, Arc’teryx T-shirt, Incendo Hoody Men’s OR Cita Hoody Women’s, and a pair of Nor­van LD2s — their latest long dis­tance trail shoe. Again, picked at ran­dom.

How do I get to the final?
Okay, so here is where our points sys­tem comes into play (see the next ques­tion for more on this).

The top 100 com­pet­it­ors at the end of the three races (ranked by points) will get an invit­a­tion to com­pete (and they will have no excuses not to because the final is free).

We will also pick 10 indi­vidu­als at ran­dom from every­one that has com­pleted two or more events to toe the start line along­side our elites (we love loy­alty).

How does the final work?

The top 100 com­pet­it­ors at the end of the three races (ranked by points) will get an invit­a­tion to com­pete (and they will have no excuses not to because the final is free). 

We will also pick 10 indi­vidu­als at ran­dom from every­one that has com­pleted two or more events to toe the start line along­side our elites (we love loy­alty).

The Final is on Sat­urday the 13th June with the dis­tance to be announced the day before the race at 1200 BST.

As it’s the final (and there are prizes up for grabs) we are going to have to get a little stricter on the evid­ence sub­mit­ted. As such, all com­pet­it­ors must:

1) Sub­mit evid­ence using Strava.

2) Tag the activ­ity as “race” so that time sub­mit­ted is total (and not just mov­ing time ;)). 

3) Ensure pro­file is set to pub­lic.

Prizes will not be awar­ded unless all above cri­ter­ia are ful­filled.

You men­tioned points… how does the sys­tem work?
We’ve designed the points sys­tem to reward every­one, regard­less of age or gender.

If you are VERY fast you may or may not have to do every qual­i­fi­er to reach the final. How­ever, if you are slower, you will prob­ably have to com­plete all three qual­i­fi­ers to make the big day. And even then, it’s not guar­an­teed (sad face emoji).

Points will be awar­ded based upon the per­cent­ile in which you fin­ish in your cat­egory, up to a max­im­um of 10,000 for each qual­i­fy­ing race.

For example:

If you fin­ish as the first female in the 18–25 cat­egory and there are 100 com­pet­it­ors in the female 18–25 cat­egory for that qual­i­fy­ing race, you would receive 10,000 points. If you fin­ish 50th in the same scen­ario, you would receive 5,000 points. If you fin­ish last in the same scen­ario, you would receive 100 points.

If you fin­ish as the first female in the 18–25 cat­egory and there are 200 com­pet­it­ors in the female 18–25 cat­egory for that qual­i­fy­ing race, you would still receive 10,000 points. How­ever, if you fin­ish 50th in this scen­ario, you would receive 7,500 points. If you fin­ish 100th in this scen­ario, you would receive 5,000 points. If you fin­ish last in this scen­ario, you would receive 50 points.

Points will accu­mu­late after each event and we will pub­lish res­ults by cat­egory and nation­al­ity as well as over­all.

How should I plan my route?
In order to have your res­ult nor­m­al­ised and com­pared to all oth­er res­ults, you must ensure that your neg­at­ive net elev­a­tion loss is no more than 10%.

You can ensure that your res­ult will count by map­ping your course on Garmin Con­nect, Strava, Suunto Movescount or sim­il­ar. Altern­at­ively, the easi­est way is just to make your start and fin­ish with­in 100 feet of the same loc­a­tion and run at least the dis­tance of the day’s race!

We sug­gest choos­ing one of three types of routes: out-and-back, lol­li­pop or loop.

Out and back: Run slightly more than half of the total dis­tance you are run­ning, then fol­low the same route back to the start.
For example, if run­ning the 8km race you should run ‘out’ approx­im­ately 4.2km out and return ‘back’ on the same route, stop­ping at the same loc­a­tion you star­ted.

Lol­li­pop: You run out for a dis­tance, then make a large loop, and return on the same route you ran while out­bound. To ensure that you reach the full race dis­tance and fin­ish where you star­ted, you may need to make an adjust­ment with an out-and-back at the end of your course.

Loop: It’s just like it sounds! Run a loop on dif­fer­ent roads end­ing where you star­ted. Just like a lol­li­pop course, you will need to be pre­pared to make an adjust­ment with an out-and-back at the end of your course to reach the full dis­tance.

How can I fol­low the races?

We encour­age you to share your jour­neys with us on social media by tag­ging @ultraxco on Face­book, Twit­ter and Ins­tagram. We will be re-shar­ing the best stor­ies! We want to see sun, beaches, moun­tains, snow caps, and maybe even desert?!

There will be a live and inter­act­ive broad­cast of each race streamed on the Ultra X social chan­nels.

How do I sub­mit my time?

The link for upload­ing your com­ple­tion time will be sent to you via email one day pri­or to the event (e.g. for the first race Fri­day 1st of May). All you will need to do is put your time in and sub­mit a screenshot/ image that provides evid­ence (e.g. from Strava, Garmin Con­nect, Suunto Movescount etc). Please ensure that evid­ence dis­plays total time taken from start to fin­ish, includ­ing any pauses (not just mov­ing time!!). If you are sub­mit­ting via Strava the easi­est way to do this is to make sure you tag the activ­ity as a “race”.

Please note that if you are par­ti­cip­at­ing on a tread­mill and wish to be con­sidered for the final, we will need evid­ence of you actu­ally run­ning on the tread­mill (not just a pic­ture of the screen at the end). We will be host­ing a Zoom call at 13:00 BST on each race day which any­one par­ti­cip­at­ing at this time can dial into. Altern­at­ively, you can film your­self doing the run and send us a time lapse video. If you are plan­ning on doing this, you must con­tact us 24 hours in advance of the race in ques­tion at contact@ultra-x.co with the sub­ject “Tread­mill Vir­tu­al Race”. If you aren’t too fussed on mak­ing the final then no wor­ries!

Par­ti­cipants may com­pete at any time that suits them provided it is on the same date as the race in their respect­ive time zone.

Time sub­mis­sions must be made by 1200 BST the day fol­low­ing the res­ult. Late sub­mis­sions will not be con­sidered in the res­ults.

Any activ­ity uploaded that is less than the required dis­tance may sub­ject the par­ti­cipant to dis­qual­i­fic­a­tion or adjust­ment of time (this is at the dis­cre­tion of the Race Dir­ect­or).

There are four races… are there four medals?!
No! There is only one medal. But it is awe­some.

Not only that, the lan­yard of the medal will be dif­fer­ent depend­ing on the num­ber of events you par­ti­cip­ate in!

1 race = White

2 races = Bronze

3 races = Sil­ver

Every­one who makes it to the final and com­pletes the dis­tance will get a gold rib­bon.

Is there a cut-off?
No! Take as long as you need. This should be fun.
How does the char­ity ele­ment work?
These dif­fi­cult times give us all as indi­vidu­als, groups, and organ­isa­tions the chance to show we care and to make a dif­fer­ence.

There­fore, 50% of all regis­tra­tion fees will be donated dir­ectly to the NHS Char­it­ies Togeth­er COVID-19 appeal and we hope that this series will also raise aware­ness of this import­ant cause.

NHS staff and volun­teers are doing amaz­ing work right now in caring for COVID-19 patients across the UK, the home of the Ultra X team. Togeth­er, we want to show our respect and grat­it­ude as they work tire­lessly in the face of the vir­us. It’s our turn to make sure we look after them, to ensure they can keep doing their vital work.

This nation­al cam­paign, endorsed by NHS Eng­land, acknow­ledges and sup­ports all NHS staff and volun­teers who are look­ing after those affected by Coronavir­us.

Funds gen­er­ated will be gran­ted to mem­ber NHS Char­it­ies sup­port­ing the health and emo­tion­al well­being of those at the front­line of the NHS, so they can deliv­er the best care pos­sible to coronavir­us patients.

The grants will cov­er above and bey­ond what the NHS alone can provide, such as well­being packs, accom­mod­a­tion, travel, park­ing and volun­teer expenses. Fur­ther­more, it sup­ports the longer term rehab­il­it­a­tion of NHS staff, volun­teers, patients and carers after the pan­dem­ic is over. Sup­port­ing NHS patients to leave hos­pit­al quickly and safely and to remain out of hos­pit­al.

For more inform­a­tion about the cam­paign, please vis­it the web­site.

When will I receive my mer­chand­ise?
Great decision! You’ve chosen to grab some lim­ited edi­tion Vir­tu­al Race Series stash (and of course a medal).

We will be send­ing this out at the end of the series (just like any oth­er race). This will be the same for t-shirts, medals, and caps.

How do I con­tact the Ultra X team?

That’s easy! We keep an eye on our inboxes at all times and guar­an­tee to respond to quer­ies with­in 24 hours. Please get in touch or email contact@ultra-x.co.

We love hear­ing from you, but please do make sure you’ve read this page thor­oughly before get­ting in touch!