The European Athletics Quality Road Race mark is a guarantee and an assurance that race organisers respect quality standards and have been assessed accordingly.
It's an all too familiar scenario recognisable to many runners.
You’ve spent weeks preparing. You’ve charged up countless hills, pounded more pavements than you can remember and spent the entire week carb loading until you’re fit to burst.
You turn up on race day feeling like a well-oiled machine. You’re ready to roll. You’re going to hit that personal best.
And then it all starts to go wrong.
There’s only one bathroom facility and there’s a queue longer than the race distance itself. Or the “road” upon which the race is to be run is actually a muddy track. Upon completion of the race, you look down at your watch and realise that the advertised 10km is actually a 9.8km and what would have been the race of your life ends up being no more than a fast training run.
If only there had been some way that you could have checked to see whether the race you were about to enter would meet the basic standards that all road races ought to? That’s where ‘European Athletics – Running for All’ helps.
For runners across Europe, or any international visitors wishing to take part in an event, the European Athletics Quality Road Race mark is a guarantee and an assurance that race organisers respect quality standards and have been assessed accordingly.
And, importantly, the Running for All web portal, available in a number of European languages, acts as a central point of information, with a calendar of certified races. With the opportunity to leave race reviews, Trip Advisor-style, it also acts as a long-lasting and growing source of peer-to-peer knowledge and advice.
It’s not just about quality, either. While it’s important for runners to be able to identify races that offer enhancements, such as premium results services, it’s even more important to know which events conform to safety standards.
Of course, the same frustrations that runners experience when standards are not met are often felt by the race organisers who offer a genuinely high quality experience to participants. Experienced race directors understand the damage that can be done to the running market when poor quality races are held.
So, for race organisers, the Quality Road Race mark stands for credibility and reassures runners, host political authorities, member federations, service providers, sponsors and other partners that the event will deliver exactly as promised.
It offers additional promotion of the event, the chance to increase and maintain participation levels, and sets certified races apart from events without the standard.
For organisers, the Running for All web portal acts as the channel to apply for certification and use of the brand in promotional materials, as well as an additional promotional channel for the event. It offers an international portal in a number of European languages for runners to access useful information.
Thanks to Running for All, 9.8km personal bests will become a thing of the past.
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