New app allows participants to virtually run MCC 5K

Senior staff reporter

Friday, February 23, 2018

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For the first time in Jamaica, runners will able to participate in an event virtually via a racerunner app, and this historic move will only happen during the Melbourne Cricket Club (MCC) Pure Water 5K charity race on March 4.

Mark Neita, president of the club, told the Jamaica Observer that the event will have runners from all over the world competing virtually via their smartphones.

“We are the first 5K event in Jamaica to have a race runner app that allows people to race anywhere in the world by just downloading the app.... they will be able to get their bibs, participate virtually and will even get their time at the end of the race on their smart phones,” Neita explained.

“So that is a significant achievement for a cricket club to bring that kind of cutting-edge technology to the table and we are really excited about that,” he added.

The race app, which is gaining popularity worldwide, will also be used during the Lap A Lyme Wellness Day today (Friday) and the Boston Shadow Run on April 18, where participants can download the app which shows the various events slated and click on to join and receive all the updates and information from the start of the race and its progress.

Meanwhile, the MCC 5K, which is just over a week away to be held on the cricket grounds on Derrymore Road starting at 7:00 am, will be aiming to raise funds for Special Olympics Jamaica and the Sickle Cell Unit. Entry fee is $1,000 and registration can be done online.

“The registration is ahead of where it was last year this time and we are happy for that. There has been a lot of interest, specifically because we have brought on sickle-cell as a beneficiary, and we all know that sickle-cell is one of our most debilitating diseases that affects so many of our young kids in Jamaica. So our role is to try and make a difference in all of that,” said Neita.

He continued: “We would love to have 2,000 people and we would love to able to raise a million dollars for each of our charities. Last year we gave Special Olympics $500,000 [and] that's the goal for this year, [but] next year we want to up that figure significantly.”

The Melbourne Cricket grounds will be buzzing with excitement as after the race there will be the usual kids' village with bounce-a-bout coupled with lots of giveaways from sponsors, plus an exhibition rugby match.

“So you have a cricket club doing a running event that will touch and expose rugby, while having a live music concert at the end of the race with some of the current young stars in the music industry,” Neita pointed out.

“We are hoping to have a wholesome event and we want people to come and participate, but also stay after and enjoy all that Melbourne has to offer. Everything will be happening at our newly refurbished ground. Just come early and enjoy,” he added.




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