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 this is the final (and there is dosh up for grabs) we are going to get strict on you, so here it is.

Read this care­fully because it could well cost you your win­nings!

All activ­it­ies must be sub­mit­ted via Strava, on a pub­lic account, and with the activ­ity type set to “race” (which dis­plays the over­all elapsed time from start to fin­ish, includ­ing any pauses). To cla­ri­fy, the activ­ity can be recor­ded on any device, but must be uploaded to and sub­mit­ted via Strava (the image sub­mit­ted as evid­ence must show the Strava user­name, so if needs be we can access that activ­ity for inspec­tion).

This is to ensure that

1) There is no watch stop­ping;
2) Race Dir­ect­ors can inspect the elev­a­tion pro­file of your chosen route.

If you must com­plete the activ­ity on a tread­mill 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”.

There will be no excep­tions to the above rules!

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!