RaceJoy Keeps Runners on Course

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Burning River Offers Live Tracking and “Off Course” Alerts to Runners

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An exciting, 100- and 50-mile solo run and 100-mile relay held in Northeast Ohio, the Burning River Endurance Run & Relay travels through several of the region’s most scenic areas, including the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, and the Cleveland and Summit Metro Parks. This year, the race organizers of Burning River offered RaceJoy so that runners could be tracked based upon their actual location by supporting friends, family and the race operations team. Race organizers took things a step further and activated RaceJoy’s Off-Course alert system to help ensure participants stayed on course throughout the 100 miles.

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According to Burning River’s race director, Jim Christ; “If you are going to run 50 or 100 miles, it is a basic need for you and your support crew to know you are on course and your exact position. We are grateful to have the opportunity to provide RaceJoy to our participants. It truly helps increase the participant’s chances of completing a very challenging, long distance, endurance event. ”

RaceJoy’s Off-Course Alerts are available for race organizers using the Race Day Monitoring system and helps them to identify any trouble spots on the course, including the potential for tampering of course directional signage. Burning River, was the first to enable this where the participants could receive these off-course alerts straight from their phone in audio format.

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Burning River Run Well-Placed Course Markings

The Burning River Run and Relay is very well marked and race organizers take extra care to position well placed markings along the course. However, in longer distance routes like this, organizers are concerned with the safety of participants and want to provide a positive experience. Participants can get tired, distracted or find themselves in the “running zone” and they may not be as alert or paying close attention to their surroundings. So, the Burning River organizers chose to turn on RaceJoy’s Off-Course alerts to help guide any participants that accidently went off the course route.

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Ohh! Look at that!

Runner: misses turn while connecting with the wildlife.

RaceJoy: “You May Be Off Course”

(Fake Race News)

The alert notifies participants that they are off course by issuing the following audio warning. Participants can then access the course map in RaceJoy to see exactly where they need to go to get back on track.

Play to Hear the Alert

 

Off-course alerts are a standard feature included in RaceJoy’s Race Day Monitoring system. Organizers have the option of issuing these to participants’ phones when they go off course and simply need to request it be enabled and confirm the accuracy of the course map. From the monitoring system, if a participant is off course, the race organizers can also choose to type a custom message that is played instantly in audio format to let the participant know how to get back on course (i.e. “Tom, you need to go to the left to get back on the course. Look at your map in RaceJoy”).

At this year’s Burning River, approximately 500 runners used the app to be tracked by 1,500 supporting family and friends. That’s an average of 3 spectators per runner!

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Those spectators showed their support with more than 4,000 audio cheers being delivered. People really enjoyed using RaceJoy. Here is one of the many responses we received:

This was my first 100-mile distance and first time using RaceJoy and it all went perfect!  

The only finish time I had in mind for my first 100 was to beat the time cap of 30 hours and be able to finish, I ended up finishing in 25:11!  I got the biggest kick out of the cheers that family and friends sent me throughout the race!   I’m sure I didn’t hear all of them with my phone on my back in my waist pack, but I heard a lot of them!  I must have heard “Can’t touch this” at least a half a dozen times and it made me smile each time!  Hearing “It’s a lovely day for a walk in the park!” gave me a chuckle and hearing Mickey Mouse say, “Dreams really do come true!” brought a tear to my eye!! 

I absolutely loved the app and my friends and family did too, they knew when to expect me and it freed up their day to do other things in between meeting me at aid stations, like eat and sleep!  Even my friend’s 3-year-old son had fun watching the beeping dot go across the screen, his mom said he was obsessed with it and when he woke up Sunday morning, the first thing he told her was he wanted to check and see where Tracy was at!  

Thank you for adding to my wonderful race experience!  

 Best,
Tracy Finn

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RaceJoy’s GPS progress alerts were sent at every mile with information like current location, pace and estimated finish. There were 36,000 progress alerts issued over the course of the weekend!

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In addition to PhoneTrak, race organizers took full advantage of RaceJoy’s capabilities by delivering real-time BIBTAG race-timing split information at eight key checkpoints along the course as the race proceeded. These were delivered through the Race Day Results platform along with official scored results. This is provided at no-charge for RaceJoy events.

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Immediately after the race, participants were able to view their official race results in RaceJoy. Results were available by course option and then by overall finishers and age group divisions.

We were super impressed with how race organizers, Western Reserve Racing, fully embraced RaceJoy’s features! Thank you, Western Reserve Racing, for including RaceJoy again at this year’s event and congratulations finishers on an amazing race! What a challenge you took on and completed! You did it!

Check out Western Reserve Racing’s upcoming races here.

RaceJoy Ready Your Event

If you’d like to add your event to RaceJoy, you can do so by going to our website or your RunSignUp Dashboard. Please note that we require a two-week minimum load time prior to the race date and an electronic version of your course map (KML/GPX format).

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Runners Blasted Off with RaceJoy at the Space Coast Marathon!

49,000 Progress Alerts   –   93% Usage   –   6,500 Cheers   –   1,200 Phones Tracked

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At the 45th anniversary of the Space Coast Marathon & Half Marathon participants and their supporting friends and family were treated to an out-of-this-world experience with RaceJoy’s interactive race day features. Courtesy of Thales Group, those who downloaded the mobile app had access to RaceJoy’s features for free. With a 93% usage rate (includes spectators and is based upon finishers), 49,000 progress alerts, 6,500 cheers and close to 1,200 phones tracked participants and their friends and family made the most out of RaceJoy on race day!

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The Space Coast Marathon organizers, Running Zone, were among the first to embrace RaceJoy and have been offering the experience at this race to its participants since 2013! Key features participants and supporting friends and family were treated to included:

  • Real-time, live phone tracking – tracking of up to 50 participants on a live map view of the official course.
  • Progress alerts – alerts sent to participants and spectators as they completed the course with information like pace and estimated finish time.
  • Send-a-Cheer – fun pre-recorded or personalized Text-to-Cheer messages sent in audio format.
  • Immediate, official race results – within moments of crossing the finish line, scored results were available in RaceJoy that included individual, age group and overall stats.
  • And so much more!
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49,000 Progress Alerts Sent on Race Day!

Another unique feature of RaceJoy allows participants to post their progress on social media (Facebook and Twitter). Participants can select to post all their stat information for each milestone, just the start and finish, or the alerts without time. Close to 1,000 progress alerts were posted to social media on race day!

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The Space Coast Marathon Weekend offers 26.2- and 13.1-mile options. The event attracts many repeat runners and the half marathon distance sells out every year. Race organizers do a lot to make sure their runners have a high quality experience, where every aspect of the race is thought through and provided for. From amenities like great food for everyone (not just the participants, which makes for a nice family experience) to the great race swag (like the Space Coast Marathon towels) to the advanced race day technology with RaceJoy.

If you’ve yet to participate in this event, the Space Coast Marathon is a bucket list race you should definitely add to your list!

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RaceJoy creators, James and Shelly Harris, landed at the Space Coast Marathon Weekend on Saturday for the expo and made their appearance at the RaceJoy booth on race day.

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We always love coming out to the race sites to meet RaceJoy fans and to cheer on the participants! And we’re not the only ones – almost 6,500 cheers were sent in RaceJoy by supporting family and friends to motivate runners!

While at the race site, we also enjoy hearing stories about what brought them to run and the challenges they have overcome. Many of the people we saw were some of the first to ever use RaceJoy.

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Congratulations finishers of the Space Coast Marathon weekend! A special thank you to Thales Group and Running Zone for including RaceJoy at this year’s event.

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If you’d like to add RaceJoy as part of the race experience for your participants and spectators, you can enable in a few simple steps and at an affordable price by visiting RaceJoy’s Website or your RunSignUp race dashboard.

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Fall Kickoff Sunday was a Big Race Day for RaceJoy’s GPS Tracking!

RaceJoy had a big turnout this weekend with four key races in the North East:

Fifth Third Capital River Run

Rochester Marathon

Newport Liberty Half Marathon

Detroit Women’s Half Marathon

We had more than 2,000 people use RaceJoy for its GPS live runner/walker tracking on Sunday, September 20. RaceJoy’s app was well used, with 21,550 views of the home pages for these races within RaceJoy. Runners and walkers used RaceJoy for its live phone tracking, GPS-based progress alerts sent from every mile point on the course and fun audio cheer sending.

Participants who used RaceJoy received audio progress alerts at every mile along the course using RaceJoy’s GPS-based Progress Alert system that provided their pace and estimated finish time. This feature was in high demand; 15,000 progress alerts were sent through RaceJoy to participants and their supporting fans. Participants also opted in to have their progress automatically posted on their Facebook and Twitter feeds while they ran the race.

One of the great things about RaceJoy is that no matter where you are, friends and family can show support and share in the race experience, even if they can’t make it to the race site. We had remote spectators from 34 states across the U.S. and from eight additional countries, including the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, Canada, Cyprus and Denmark.

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Remote Spectators Using RaceJoy to Support Runners on September 20, 2015.

Spectators made full use of RaceJoy – race participants had, on average, at least one person tracking them in RaceJoy. Friends and family further showed their support by sending 2,400 audio cheers to race participants with cheers like You Can Do It!, Chin Up and Go Get Em!.

The Fifth Third Capital City River Run was the first race to offer RaceJoy for free to participants and spectators. Learn more about this here. Typically participants and spectators pay a 99 cents per race upgrade fee. The Capital City River Run had the highest usage across the entire weekend, with more than 900 users and 8,000+ progress alerts issued. The Rochester Marathon was a close second with 800 users and 5,200+ progress alerts issued.

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RaceJoy users this weekend posted more than just their progress alerts to Facebook and Twitter:

Heidi Bogan: @RaceJoy what a great app! Timely and accurate! #CapitalCityRiverRun

The key factor we see for usage consistently comes down to promotion (of course, it doesn’t hurt if it is for free!). We have found that the more race participants know that live tracking is available in RaceJoy, the more they will use it. These races all promoted RaceJoy to their participants through various efforts such as posting information about RaceJoy on their websites, enabling the RaceJoy widget for their registration web page, sending emails, posting on their social media walls, etc.

These four races also had the common factor of being RunSignUp registration customers.  RaceJoy is a RunSignUp product and is available for all races regardless of the registration provider. However, RunSignUp customers benefit from a deeper integration for things like loading information within RunSignUp’s dashboard, automatic RaceJoy promotion within registration web pages, and registration links within the RaceJoy app.

RunSignUp customers can easily “RaceJoy Ready” their race through RunSignUp’s dashboard. Non RunSignUp customers simply need to send their request to AddRace@RaceJoy.com. Race organizers and sponsors can buyout the live phone tracking and pricing starts at $450. To learn more about the buyout options available, Click Here.

RunSignUp’s RaceJoy Live Tracking at Gate River Run

RunSignUp’s RaceJoy mobile platform was heavily accessed at Gate River Run in Jacksonville, Florida this weekend. Close to 250 people used RaceJoy’s PhoneTrak feature with about 110 being participants and 140 being spectators. Supporting spectators were tracking participants live on the race course from 104 cities in primarily the United States, but also in Denmark and Canada. The race was accessed 10,717 times in RaceJoy – showing a highly engaged audience.

Real-time snapshot of spectators tracking participants:

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Some very tenacious participants were tracked by supporting fans for well over 4.5 hours (Gate River Run is a 15K course). So, after the race was closed down, participants were still supported by family and friends through RaceJoy until they achieved their personal finish. Also, for those on the ground at the race, RaceJoy issued 120 NearMe proximity alerts notifying spectators when their tracked participant was drawing near.

Here are some photos of live tracking on race day. You can track up to 20 people at a time.

In addition, spectators sent 685 cheers with Go Get Em! being the most sent cheer. This is a feature favorite among users of RaceJoy where fun pre-recorded cheers are available to send to participants at any time before, during or after the race.

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If you’d like to get your race added to RaceJoy, simply enable RaceJoy in the RunSignUp GO platform and send your course map electronically (KML, GPX or link to map). We need a minimum of two weeks to load and will send you notice and promotion toolkit once it is active. This is free to the event and the participant and spectator pay a 99 cents per race upgrade fee.

GRR_PhoneRaceJoy Key Features:

  • Live Phone Tracking
  • Audio Cheer Sending
  • NearMe Proximity Alerts
  • MeetUp Mapping
  • Soon to be released: GPS Progress Alerts