Inverness Virtual Races is a real success with over 130 people taking part
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A RUNNING group designed to challenge athletes of all abilities every week has become a runaway success.
Inverness Virtual Races, an online group on Strava which sets courses from hundreds of metres to half marathons, has more than 130 people taking part on a regular basis.
The group was set up by David Munro from Lochardil, who was a volunteer at the Inverness Parkrun which is suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Munro (36), who works as a head of product at a telecoms company, says he wanted to create a group which was accessible for everyone to take part in.
“I read an article about the Inverness Harriers taking part in a group holding virtual challenges,” he said.
“But it seemed exclusive to elite runners. I wanted to do something that was a bit more open to all.
“It has been great and we have created a community type event.
“I wanted to replace Parkrun and it is the same sort of vibe.”
He added: “It doesn’t matter if you can run 5k in 18 minutes or in an hour.It is all about getting out and running.”
The group which was established in April sets challenges based at different locations in Inverness with the start and finish lines set each week.
“We have done a number of different courses, the shortest was a 400 metre sprint and the longest one we did was a half marathon,” said Munro.
“We have tried to keep it interesting every week and go round different parts of Inverness including the distributor road and Kessock Bridge.”
Munro says participants have relished the opportunity to get out running during the coronavirus pandemic where chances to do so have been limited.
“There has been a lot of good feedback,” he said.
“It gives them something to do at the weekend and making a connection with runners knowing you’re doing the course at the same time. It helps them get out of the house and is also good for mental health.”
Saturday's race is 1Km in Inshes Park called “IVR -Helter Skelter”.
n For more information visit Inverness Virtual Races on Strava.