Over 8,000 Registered Participants From 94 Nations Register to Take on Rock ‘N’ Roll VR18

August 31, 2020

- Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Series Featured Rock ‘n’ Roller Bertrand Newson of San Jose, California shares “Why I VR” - Rock This Town, charitable arm of the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon Series, will donate $1 to the Tommy Rivers Puzey recovery fund for every runner that signs up for the State 48 Challenge - First stop on the soon-to-launched Rock ‘n’ Road Trip, kicks off Friday, Sept. 4 with first stop featuring Rock ‘n’ Roll VR Virginia Beach and offering half marathon, 5K, 1-mile and a Remix Challenge to global running community

TAMPA, Fla. (Aug. 31, 2020) More than 8,000 people from 94 nations and 45 states stepped up the virtual start line for the 18th edition of the Rock ‘n’ Roll® Virtual Running™ (VR™) Series. This past weekend’s Rock ‘n’ Roll VR18 gave participants the opportunity to challenge themselves with two different race distances that included a Half Marathon and 5K, as well as the Remix Challenge for participants who wanted to take on both distances. Participants were able to compete anywhere, indoors or outdoors, as long as the distance of their choosing was completed in one session between Friday, Aug. 28 at 5 a.m. ET and event close Sunday, Aug. 30 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

Featured Rock ‘n’ Roller Shares “Why I VR”

Bertrand Newson – San Jose, California

Bertrand Newson is the captain of a running and fitness team called Too Legit Fitness, based in the Bay Area. With approximately 800 members it’s one of the larger running clubs in the South Bay, and always has a powerful presence at the Rock ’n’ Roll San Jose Half Marathon, where they volunteer as pacers. “We were founded on camaraderie, fitness fellowship, and celebrating each other’s success,” Newson says of the diverse club made up of “all shapes and sizes.” The group is also active outside of racing, giving of their time to numerous community organizations, charities, and food banks in the area. “It’s not all about PRs and bling,” Newson, a certified running coach, jokes. “I couldn’t be prouder of the team in that aspect. There are always ways to pay it forward, whether it’s local park clean-ups, donating used race shirts and shoes, or working at a senior’s center,” he says, naming a few of the group’s recent endeavors. Several of Newson’s team members have used the Rock ’n’ Roll Virtual Challenges and races to stay active and motivated throughout the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. “From a coaching perspective, it’s been fantastic,” says Newson. “We’re all seeking a bit of normalcy as we deal with the curveballs the pandemic has thrown at us. Having a slice of the goals that are feeding our health and fostering community—it’s great stuff, almost a form of therapy.” Newson expands on running and what the virtual racing has brought to his community in The Beat.

Giving Back

Rock This Town®, the charitable arm of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series, is supporting the Rock ‘n’ Roll VR Club State 48 Challenge. For every State 48 Challenge participant, Rock This Town will donate $1 to the Tommy Rivers Puzey recovery fund as he battles a rare form of cancer. Tommy is a well-known trail runner and physical therapist from Arizona and a back-to-back men’s champion of the 2018 and 2019 Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon. Last week, the IRONMAN Foundation® announced its third round of IRONAIDTM COVID-19 Support Fund grants to another 40 charitable organizations. To date, over $300,000 in funds have been distributed to 120 health-related charitable organizations around the world. Applications for the fourth round are now open. For more information about IRONAID, The IRONAID 140.6 and Rock This Town, visit ironmanfoundation.org/ironaid.

Rock ‘n’ Roll VR18 Recap

Participants for Rock ‘n’ Roll VR18 came from around the world and ranged in age from 19 to 82. The United States led the way with over 6,000 walkers and runners followed by Mexico (over 300), United Kingdom (over 300), Canada (over 400), and Portugal (over 150). Other nations represented included Brazil, Denmark, Ireland, Guam, Hungary, Netherlands, Moldova, Paraguay, Romania and Ukraine, among others. Liechtenstein joined the nations represented in a Rock ‘n’ Roll VR event for the first-time during Rock ‘n’ Roll VR18. Of the 45 U.S. states represented this past weekend, the greatest number came from California, followed by Texas, Florida, Virginia, and Arizona.

More than 11,000 participants took on a Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Club™ Challenge leading up to Rock ‘n’ Roll VR18. Several separate running and workout-based challenges were offered with the opportunity for special prizes such as a Rock ‘n’ Roll by Brooks Running Company Accessories Bundle, a Rock ‘n’ Roll Hydration Backpack and Rock ‘n’ Roll by Compressport Tie Dye Compression Socks, Endless Backpack, and Compression Calf Sleeve. The challenges included the Music City Challenge and United Airlines: The Takeoff. To date, over 54,000 people from across the globe have joined the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Club platform, giving them access to the series of weekly races, challenges, and rewards.

Looking Forward

For the first time, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Series is connecting to the physical event locations in a virtual way, with the soon to launch Rock ‘n’ Road Trip. The tour bus hits the virtual road with one of the favorite race destinations on the running series tour with the new Rock ‘n’ Roll VR Virginia Beach weekend. To celebrate 20 years of the iconic Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon which historically takes place over the Labor Day weekend, runners and walkers across the world are able to sign up for the FREE virtual half marathon, 5K, 1-mile or even take on the Remix Challenge, and get ready to make waves in this first exciting stop in a new upcoming virtual tour. Race weekend starts on Friday, Sept. 4 at 5 a.m. ET and runs through Sunday, Sept. 6 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

In addition, the  State 48 Challenge, created to showcase Arizona and the Rock ‘n’ Roll Arizona Marathon & ½ Marathon which takes place in the 48th admitted U.S. state, prepares to open on Tuesday, September 1 to the global community of runners along with multiple other Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Club Challenges. The new challenge will have participants complete 48 miles of running or walking throughout the month of September highlighting the participants of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Arizona who return to race year-after-year and take great pride in racing on a course that goes through the cities of Phoenix, Scottsdale, & Tempe. Participants who complete the challenge will earn 770 points (equivalent of 154 credits toward rewards) and become eligible to win a free Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series registration to future physical event. To date, over 4,000 runners have already registered to take on the new State 48 Challenge.

To register for Rock ‘n’ Roll VR18, runners need to sign up through the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Club platform and connect to their tracker app. Runners can then complete their registration by going to the “Events” tab and clicking “Register Now” on the virtual race page.

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Series also offers tangible Rock ‘n’ Roll VR Finisher Bundles and other Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Series merchandise at www.runrocknrollstore.com/rock-n-roll-vr. Finishers who complete the Remix Challenge also earn access to additional medals.

Full details and specifics regarding the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Series, Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Club and Challenges are available on www.runrocknrollvr.com. For more information on the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series, please visit the website at www.runrocknroll.com. Media related inquiries may be directed to press@runrocknroll.com.


About Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series® is the world’s largest running series taking part in over 30 destination events around the world every year. Established in 1998, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series simple idea of making running fun has transformed both the U.S. and global running landscape by infusing the course with live bands, cheer teams and entertaining water stations, creating a block-party atmosphere for participants and spectators alike. Focused on running, music and community, race weekend kicks off with a free Health & Fitness Expo showcasing the latest in running gear, sports apparel, health and nutritional information and much more. Events culminate with an entertaining finish-line festival featuring some of the biggest names in music, with past performances including Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, O.A.R. Aloe Blacc, Pitbull, Flo Rida, The Band Perry, Fitz and the Tantrums, the Goo Goo Dolls and Bret Michaels. Further information about the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series can be found online at www.RunRocknRoll.com and follow @RunRocknRoll on all social platforms.

About The IRONMAN Group

The IRONMAN Group operates a global portfolio of events that includes the IRONMAN® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® 70.3® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® Virtual Racing™ (VR™) Series, 5150™ Triathlon Series, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series®, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running™ Series, IRONKIDS®, ITU World Triathlon Series, premier running events including the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon™ and The Sun-Herald City2Surf® presented by Westpac, Ultra-Trail® World Tour events including Tarawera Ultra and Ultra-Trail Australia™, mountain bike races including the Absa Cape Epic®, road cycling events, and other multisport races. The IRONMAN Group is the largest operator of mass participation sports in the world and provides more than a million participants annually the benefits of endurance sports through the company’s vast offerings. Since the inception of the iconic IRONMAN® brand and its first event in 1978, athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines around the world. Beginning as a single race, The IRONMAN Group has grown to become a global sensation with hundreds of events across 55+ countries. The IRONMAN Group is owned by Advance (www.advance.com), a private, family-owned business. For more information, visit www.ironman.com.