The R86 is firmly committed to having t-shirts and medals as a part of providing a great ultra-event and runner experience. Going forward the event will continue to provide t-shirts and medals however we need to be considerate to the end-to-end environmental costs of the products.
T-shirts and medals have to be produced, usually in China, shipped here, distributed, printed, worn by really cool runners, then disposed of. The environmental cost of transport then disposal is significant and needs to be considered and controlled whilst still allowing for you all to look super cool!
The R86 is taking this seriously and believes that a combination of good will and technology can lead the way to sustainable and considerate provision of t-shirts and medals.
So, what's happening? Well, T-shirts in 2018 will be designed with two blank areas. The first top-most blank will enable runners to add the years they have already run the event themselves. The second area will have 2018 already printed.
Going forwards in to 2019 the same R86 T-shirt can be used to have the 2019 R86 Logo and Year printed or embroidered by a suitable printer or embroiderers. The graphics will be provided for free on this website. They will be printer friendly so the printers/embroiderers can use them easily.
Further to this the event will provide the graphics for the entire T-shirt should you want to have make one yourself. You may have a great running shirt that you want to wear with the R86 graphics - well now you can on any material supported by your printer/embroiderer.
There will be an additional, very simple, R86 logo and year graphic that you will be able to use to add to an existing shirt - your bragging T-shirt. These graphics will be provided every year from 2018 (eighteen).
The event will continue to provide T-shirts just as it does today. The price of the event will be without a t-shirt BUT the cost of the t-shirt will be clearly marked, as will all the prices - no surprises.
2019 sees a new, much more substantial medal. The observer will notice the ribbon loop isn't fully closed. This will allow for additional ribbons to be slipped on in future years. The intention is to allow runners to opt-out of receiving further medals in favour of a discount, though will be given a ribbon to add to their existing medal at no cost on the day.
The race organiser is aware that this might be somewhat controversial. Additionally it is not yet clear quiet how this will be administered as the event utilises third party services that may not be possible to adapt.
The event organiser asks that runners look at the environmental gains putting to one side any complaints that the event is not conforming to historical norms.
Summary: You'll receive a more substantial medal that you'll be pleased to keep = better way to mark your achievement. Going forward you'll re-vamp your award every time you complete the R86 by adding a new ribbon = mark your achievement and save some money.
You will, of course, be able to have a medal and that's okay too.
All runners have the option to keep everything as it is today only receiving a t-shirt if they opt to, along with the medal.
Additionally, runners will have access to the graphics allowing them to make their own t-shirt or simply have the logo and year added to an existing shirt.
The R86 organiser thinks this is a great way for you all to enjoy the event whilst being able to taylor the rewards/costs to your individual requirements whilst balancing the environmental impact.
The Ridgeway Challenge logo can be downloaded here.