The NextGen events are here!

The NextGen events are here!

The marathons, triathlons, and runs of the future have now arrived. This consensus was undeniable in a recent webinar that included speakers from Spartan, Super League Triathlon, Tata Consulting Services (title sponsor of the New York and London Marathon among others) and our very own MetaSport CEO.

With the pandemic hitting sporting events hard, industry leaders spent the last 15 months reinventing their world. Moving forward, sporting events will be a lot more digital. The mass-participation industry is probably one of the rare industries in the world that has remained very traditional (stone age really!), failing to attract many of the Millennials and Gen Z and sometimes not even remaining attractive to many sport enthusiasts.

The next-generation events are hybrid in nature, combining the best of the traditional mass-participation and virtual events. Recently, a few different formats have been created to fit different types of events, geographic markets, and participant profiles.

The one that MetaSport has created and believes in is powered by MyRaceGate.

It’s an app that audio guides participants, in groups of 50 or hundreds / thousands at a time, on a designated course from start to finish. Runners choose their preferred time slot, and select whether they want it to be a competitive or friendly run. Our virtual coach updates them about their achievement along the way, and their ranking is available as soon as they pass the finish line with a live leaderboard.

The benefits of the next generation events to the participants are numerous.  

Some of the traditional events have become expensive and sometimes out of reach for the younger generations. There is more to it; the 3am wake-up call to make it on time to an overcrowded, hardly accessible start line where finding friends is impossible, not mentioning the queue at the bag deposit or for any of the other facilities, can be overwhelming.

Added to that, the pressure to perform has prevented many of the not-so-confident or not-so-fit to join and feel that they belong. Yes, many have joined, but many more have not.

In a nutshell, the price issue combined with the pre-event logistic complications and psychological barriers have put off many from entering mass-participation events. At most, we do one or two events a year on average when a better way to keep us motivated and fit all year round would be to join one every month or couple of months.

There is no doubt about the fact that the thrill and buzz of the traditional event is irreplaceable, and for this reason, the traditional mass-participation events will keep existing. The beauty of this whole new world is that we will have the possibility to keep doing one or two iconic events that we love every year, while adding to our calendar the NextGen events that offer the flexibility, convenience, stress-free experience that the digital developments have brought to many areas of our life.

 Comparison at a glance:

  NextGen event Traditional event
Price Affordable / Good value Sometimes too expensive
Start time Flexible / own choice Fixed
Community / social feel Choose who you run with, friends, colleagues, club members Lost on the start line with thousand strangers
Competition A clear course, great for PBs Bottleneck on the course
Results Instant / live leaderboard Sometimes long wait
Goodies Up to the organiser Up to the organiser
Inclusiveness For the newly active and not-so-fit: less pressure to perform Pressure and anxiety to perform
Sustainability Green events, much reduced waste and carbon footprint Huge amount of waste


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