Around 3000 registrants took up the challenge of running or walking, individually, one or several times the 5, 10, and 20km routes, between November 1st and 22nd, following the audio guidance of the connected application: a first in Europe.
As the Geneva 20km by Genève Aéroport could not take place this year in its usual format, the organisation offered to the participants a connected and audio guided competition respecting the current health measures. Everyone was able to run the distance of their choice, on the day of their choice, between November 1st and 22nd, in Geneva. The 3 courses: the 5km by Generali, the 10km by Romande Energie, and the 20km by Genève Aéroport, which were more than 50% similar to the original courses, crossed the City of Geneva as well as the towns of Pregny-Chambésy, Bellevue, and Genthod.
In front of the Broken Chair, on the “Place des Nations”, the runners warmed up and took their pictures before crossing the virtual start line. Once started, they just had to follow “the voice” to find their way on the course. “I took part in the 20km and I really loved it. The audio guide is very well done and the explanations are interesting. The route is incredible and I went through places I didn’t know at all. I recommend this race to everyone”. Redge Marty, a participant in the 20km by Genève Aéroport.
For the fourth consecutive year, the Breast Cancer Network was the charity partner of the event. The runners, who benefited from free registration, were encouraged to support the association by making a donation when they registered. “Despite therapeutic progress, breast cancer remains a very common disease affecting 1 in 8 women of all ages. The mission that the Breast Cancer Network has been pursuing for 19 years is still relevant today: to reduce the impact of this cancer and its treatments on the lives of women and their loved ones”, explains Marylise Pesenti, co-president of the Breast Cancer Network. Thanks to the generosity of the participants, CHF12,050 has been raised to support this cause. These donations will be attributed to the Breast Cancer Network Geneva-based physical and telephone hotline, which supports people with this disease and their loved ones.
The mild weather of the last three weeks and the beauty of the routes motivated the runners and walkers to take part in the event. Andriy Muzalyev, a participant in the 20km by Genève Aéroport is very happy with his race: “It allows us to find in a certain way the atmosphere of a real popular race”. Well trained for his race, Didier Morard, participating in the 5km by Generali had the pleasure “to experiment a new concept of race and to reach an objective in this particular year”.
With or without an objective, it was possible to participate several times in order to test several distances, to improve one’s time, or to stay in shape. In addition, participants could compare themselves to two other people who had already run thanks to a feature in the application.
More than 600 members of sports clubs, associations, or companies took part in the team challenge; a collective objective that allowed them to challenge each other, taking turns and keeping their distance. The objective was to motivate as many participants as possible in their team to win the challenge. The Léman Running group won this challenge hands down with 50 runners and walkers. Among the many teams, the Triathlon Club Genève was delighted with the concept: “The Challenge 2.0 was a great way to get back to training with a goal at last, following the cancellation of a good number of events this year”.
“I had a lot of pleasure on this superb route through international Geneva”, explains Marie Barbey-Chappuis, the administrative councilor of the City of Geneva in charge of the Department of Sports Safety. “I congratulate the organisation for having been able to keep their race alive despite the health crisis”.
The title partner, Genève Aéroport is delighted with the success of the event: “A 2.0 Take-off more than successful! Today we can say that the digital version of the race is a real success and, as a title sponsor, we are very proud to be part of the adventure. Thanks to the concept and the innovative application, the participants have regained the excitement and pleasure of popular races…while respecting the health rules. Sport is a great tool for social cohesion, it creates emotions and motivation. The success of this digital edition is a perfect example of this”.
Benjamin Chandelier, the event director, is delighted with the success of the event: “We are proud to have been able to organise the Geneva 2.0km by Genève Aéroport in a connected version. We studied several solutions in order to find the winning combination and we are happy to have succeeded; the feedback from the participants is excellent. And a little anecdote, for the first time, a great part of our Committee was able to participate, which is completely impossible under normal circumstances! Finally, on behalf of the Committee, I would like to thank our title partner Genève Aéroport, the City of Geneva and the other towns involved (Pregny-Chambesy, Genthod, and Bellevue), as well as all our other partners, in particular, Generali and Romande Energie, without whom this event would not have been possible”.