Ireland's longest-running corporate race series goes virtual for 2020

Greg Mulhall

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Greg Mulhall

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greg.mulhall@iconicnews.ie

Kilkenny Kilkenny Kilkenny

Ireland's longest-running corporate race series goes virtual for 2020

Ireland’s largest and longest-running corporate race series has launched a virtual nationwide 5K, GT5K, with races set to take place virtually around the island of Ireland for the first time ever.

Professional services firm Grant Thornton’s annual 5K race series has seen over 44,700 runners in Dublin, Cork, Galway and Belfast take part for the past eight years, is going virtual this year to continue to raise charitable funds in a time of need. 

The race series encourages social running amongst Ireland’s business community and welcomes all abilities, from beginners to experienced runners, with all proceeds going to Alzheimer’s Society of Ireland and Supporting Young Irish Athletes.

New features being introduced this year include the use of a live leaderboard and a new online registration system, and this year teams and individuals are invited to enter.

This year the competitions open to corporate teams, individuals, families, sports clubs and anybody else who would like to enter a team. Runners will be able to register online, complete their run over the weekend of the August 14th, 15th and 16th  and upload their best time to a live leaderboard by midnight on Sunday,  August 16.

Earlier this year The Alzheimer’s Society of Ireland was announced as the 2020 GT5K Charity Partner and runners are encouraged to #doitfordementia as many charities are struggling to raise funds as a result of Covid-19.

“Due to the current guidelines and restrictions in place due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the organising committee have taken the decision to host a virtual GT5K this year. At Grant Thornton we embrace tomorrow’s challenges as opportunities and live the ethos of doing things differently and living the ‘Status Go’ mentality so we’ve decided to launch a nationwide virtual GT5K to ensure our charity partners do not lose out on much needed funds,” commented Managing Partner, Michael McAteer, on the GT5K virtual launch.

“There was much deliberation about the decision, our only options were a virtual run or nothing so this year’s race is, not only virtual but open to all, individuals and teams, and will hopefully capture the imagination locally and nationally.”

Commenting on his involvement in the GT5K, Irish Rugby 7’s Player and Love Island winner Greg O’Shea said, “I am delighted to be involved with GT5K as it goes virtual this year. I think it is incredibly important for workplaces to promote a healthy, active lifestyle, especially with more people working from home in recent months. 

“The GT5K is a great opportunity to encourage each other to get out there and stay active in our communities and workplaces for a good cause.” 

Organised by the national governing body for running, Athletics Ireland, the GT5K also supports the top emerging young athletes in Ireland through the Athletics Ireland Junior high-performance programme, which develops athletes in Ireland of all ages, disciplines and abilities.  

CEO of Athletics Ireland, Hamish Adams, said “While the physical events in Cork, Galway, Belfast, and Dublin are not taking place this summer, we are delighted to be working with Grant Thornton in bringing the Virtual GT5K to an even wider audience in 2020. Everyone can take part in this year’s event irrespective of location, and in doing so you will be supporting a wonderful cause in the Alzheimer’s Society of Ireland, as well as close to 100 of our emerging young athletes fulfil their potential.”

This year the registration fee €10 will be split between Alzheimer’s Society of Ireland and Athletics Ireland’s Junior high-performance programme. All participants will receive a virtual goodie bag with the option to purchase a GT5K run technical jersey.

Record you best 5k time and submit by midnight on August 16 to make the leader board. For information on the race dates, visit www.grantthornton.ie/gt5k