The Nike Human Race 10km

Comments 13 by Rebecca Bollwitt

You may have seen the adds around town, “Montreal vs Vancouver”, pitting Canadians cities against each other as though it was a warm up for the hockey season. On August 31st, 2008 Nike is arranging a global 10km fun run in 25 cities, starting at the same time on all continents.

The event kicked off in Vancouver with a VIP reception under the Granville Bridge. It’s been strange to see all the hype surrounding the race as it seems very exclusive so far.

After spending some time on the Nike Plus website (and after making a Manga-type character or “Mini me”) I searched for more information in order to find out what all of this is actually about aside from being a big marketing push.

Usually running events in Vancouver are planned and advertised months in advance and my favourites are all for great causes, like the upcoming Run for the Cure. The Human Race a neat concept when you think that you’ll be running through the streets of Vancouver at dusk while someone else will be doing the same at that moment, running through Lima. However, what is the cause here? Where does the registration money go?

Run locally, help globally. During registration choose the charity you want to support: UN Refugee Agency, Lance Armstrong Foundation, or the WWF. Nike will donate $5 of each $50 registration fee to the Nike+ Human Race fund to be distributed equally to the three Nike+ Human Race charities, up to US $1.5 million. Funds will then be distributed in proportion to the kilometres run by runners supporting each charity. [FAQ]

I was also wondering about the entertainment. The race kicks off at 7:00pm and the shows follow at 7:30pm with an opening band. Then The Trews take the stage with Theory of a Deadman wrapping up the event at 9:45 until 11:00pm. If you’re running the 10kms (and probably do so in about 60 minutes) you’ll more than likely miss the first few bands.

You can check out more information on the “Race Blog” (which doesn’t have an RSS feed or comments) and watch the site for route details that will be released, hopefully sometime in the next 4 days so you can plan for those road closures accordingly.

13 Comments  —  Comments Are Closed

  1. Tyler IngramWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 7:59am PDT

    The race starts here at 7pm? I’ll be on the island so I won’t have to deal with the mass amounts of people though lol. Least there is still some sun up at that time.

    Perhaps if they do it again next year I’ll be able to participate, 10k is a bit much for me at the moment.

  2. Robert FinlaysonWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 8:53am PDT

    I was on Robson Street on Sunday, walked past the Nike store and entered the race. On Monday I started to train!

    Road closures include: Cambie Street (Dunsmuir to Nelson), Smithe Street, Cambie Street Bridge*, W 2nd Ave., E 2nd Ave., Quebec Street, W 1st Ave (before the Burrard St. Bridge), Burrard St. Bridge*, Pacific Street and Nelson Street.

    * More than likely the bridges won’t be closed; only some lanes won’t be available for cars. Expect delays.

    The Vancouver Race has a limit of 13,000 runners; so try to use public transport and leave the car at home.

    I’m excited about the event and no doubt Vancouver’s “time” will be compared to the other cities. My only whinge is I wish the Terry Fox Foundation was one of 3 charities to select from.

  3. DarrenWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 8:56am PDT

    I guess (much like the Sun Run) it’s a for-profit event, as $5 out of $50 doesn’t sound particularly charitable.

  4. wynWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 9:19am PDT

    I see the advertisements all over town and frown because ads pitting the cities against each other seem misleading. Vancouver can claim props for being the only Canadian city to host one of the 10K runs. It would be more accurate to pit Vancouver against one of the other host cities, say, Sao Paulo. People who can’t make it to Vancouver have the “virtual run” option that I imagine uses the iPod Nano Nike peripheral to track and then upload your result.

    Personally, I think the race is nauseatingly propagandist: website is too flashy, the “cheeky” play on words for the race name, the proportion going to charity seems puny (but what do I know), an evening run is not as “serious”, and hints to get their iPod-ready Nike+ gear. That doesn’t mean I will turn down a free t-shirt with the race bib you have pictured with this post – it’s Nike Dri-Fit without the price tag 😉

  5. bzWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 10:09am PDT

    It took me forever poking around the Nike+ website to try and find specifics about the route, time, registration etc. All the flashy flashness is pointless.

    There are route maps, if you dig enough, the race will be run mostly through the downtown area with the bands and parties around BC Place.

    It sounds like a fun, good idea, but they’re making it a bitch to actually get involved and sign up. In the end it’ll be a lot of hype without much result

  6. BethWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 1:14pm PDT

    Glad to hear that I wasn’t the only one who was confused by their website. Totally flashy, but damn near impossible to find any useful information like the race route or how to register. And I couldn’t even find the part that said how much of the money goes to the charities (I remember looking on the FAQ when I signed up; maybe they added that in later?).

    Now that I see it here, it sounds like it’s more than just $5 per runner… “…$5 of each $50 registration fee to the Nike+ Human Race fund to be distributed equally to the three Nike+ Human Race charities, up to US $1.5 million. Funds will THEN be distributed in proportion to the kilometres run by runners supporting each charity.” (emphasis on the “THEN” is mine)…. does this mean that $5 from 1/3 of the runners goes to each charity, and then more money from the remaining $45 per runner goes to the charities based on which charity you chose to support? Or am I reading the wrong? Of course, it doesn’t specify how much of the remaining $45 goes to charity – which would be useful to know.

  7. PhaedraWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 2:02pm PDT

    I have a friend doing it and I went to their website and couldn’t figure out what the hell was going on beyond their own adverts. So I left the site.

  8. Greg CrosbyWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 2:43pm PDT

    Indeed the web site leaves much to be desired. Does anyone know the Nike media contact person for this event so I can get media passes? I have a call in to Nike’s Canada media rep, but they’re back east so I’m not holding my breath for callback…

  9. MikeWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 2:53pm PDT

    The boys at Vancity buzz posted this info a long time ago.

  10. Miss604Wednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 3:10pm PDT

    Hi Mike,

    The best thing about a blog is that you don’t have to be the one to break the news (and this certainly isn’t a news site). It’s all about being personal, having your own thoughts, sharing them, and getting a discussion going. Thanks to everyone that’s commented so far, I’m pretty happy with posting this now 🙂

  11. MickWednesday, August 27th, 2008 — 9:26pm PDT

    The boys at Vancity Buzz also use idiotic pennames like ‘Money J Skeets’ and ‘The Schwab’. So maybe theirs is not a model to emulate?

  12. NickFriday, August 29th, 2008 — 9:44am PDT

    Late to the game I guess, but I just found your blog and really like it so far. I’m really looking forward to the Human Race actually even though it is definitely an extremely commercial event. The Sun Run was my first 10K and I really enjoyed the atmosphere with the local bands on the race route, people cheering you on, and meeting all the other runners. If this is even half as good, I’ll be pretty happy.

    Plus how often do you get to see big bands like the Trews and theory of a deadman for just $50.

  13. steward.duSaturday, August 30th, 2008 — 1:26am PDT

    I’m also running the humance in Shanghai. We start on 7am Sunday morning, very early.

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