Racing to rediscover KL

  • Metro News
  • Wednesday, 13 Nov 2019

Participants planning their strategies during the race.

A tech-fuelled urban race that combined augmented reality and location-based technology allowed its participants to not only compete with each other but also explore the city.

Held for the first time in Malaysia, District Race saw more than 8,000 participants conquering Kuala Lumpur’s streets after being flagged off in stages at Dataran Merdeka.

These participants, known as Explorers, had to download the race’s mobile application to join three different race categories namely the Scan Challenge, Discovery Challenge and Time Trial Challenge.

They had to plan and strategise their exploration route to fully maximise the time limit (one or two hours, depending on categories) to “check-in” at various checkpoints that grant different point values.

These checkpoints, mostly located at places of interest, required explorers to either pass by or complete virtual challenges to earn points. Those with the most points were the victor.

Presented by AIA Vitality, the race encouraged participants to lead active, healthy lifestyles by motivating them to get active while exploring the city.

Launched in June, it has activated various grids in Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Melaka and Johor Baru, allowing explorers to experience the race before the grand finale at District Race KL.

In total, participants would have run a collective distance of 82,000km and completed over 180,000 virtual challenges and checkpoints.

Jimmy Lim was named winner of the District Race Ultimate Explorer Challenge for completing the most runs with the District Race app.

“I am very excited to have won and will continue to explore new and old grids because it makes me feel alive.

“My wife first introduced me to District Race and we both love running with the app. We have also explored familiar places like the Lake Gardens, Bangsar, as well as grids in our hometown, Penang.

“Having checkpoints and challenges as an additional focus makes it more fun and interesting, ” he said, adding that he was looking forward to visiting other beautiful places around the world and trying out the District grids there.

Lim won a round-the-world trip to try out District Race grids available in over 35 cities globally.

District Race District Technologies chief executive officer Ben Pember said the race was created to inspire everyone to rediscover their city while increasing their fitness level.

“We want to thank AIA Malaysia for all its support in making District Race KL possible. The race helps people get active in a way that is totally unique to Malaysians which is to get fit and have fun beyond a typical race.

“The massive turnout for the very first Malaysian edition of District Race today is hugely encouraging, ” he said.

AIA Malaysia chief marketing officer Heng Zee Wang said the race garnered support and enthusiasm from participants all over the country.

“We are excited to celebrate the culmination of District Race with this historic event at Dataran Merdeka and are thrilled to see an overwhelming number of participants.

“Our journey with District is part of the efforts to encourage Malaysians to get active with their family and friends while experiencing their city in a whole new light.

“We hope to continue supporting avenues like this as part of our mission to help Malaysians live healthier, longer and better lives.”

After the race, participants were treated to an array of activities from augmented reality games, live music, great food and interactive experiences from AIA, eToro and Adidas.

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