A week or so ago Ron Wallwork put out a feeler to the Enfield League race walking community, asking if , given the continued COVID restrictions, there would be support for a Virtual Series over the coming months. The response was overwhelmingly in favour but see Ron’s measured conclusion below. Ron confirms that anyone irrespective of standard or nationality is welcome to participate. There is a difference in terms of the ERWL proposal and the opprtunities by the World Virtual Series weekly 2k and our monthly Club Series. The EWRL format homes in on a particular weekend each month, mirroring an actual racing date. Basically you have to submit a clocking on that weekend. In this sense some of us might be interested in being involved as another source of motivation. Over to you.
Virtual ERWL to go ahead
Over 25 people responded to the enquiry about initiating a Virtual ERWL, with all but two expressing a positive view towards the suggestion. There was a vehement objection, that wasn’t sent to me, which expressed deep concern about the standard of walking and course accuracy, which is a legitimate view that people are entitled to hold.
However, the ethos of the ERWL since its inception by Martin Oliver 23 years ago, has always be to welcome and engage walkers of all standards and that’s why it operates under the B rule. This is not to say that the ERWL is opposed to the A standard, but it should be remembered that it was born out of the need to judge elite and often full time athletes.
The vagaries of tracking devices are well known, so of course results might well be skewed, but so long as the intent is honest the integrity of the competition remains. As for deliberate cheaters, well they only deceive themselves and when the pandemic is over, all the virtual performances will be judged against times set in real ones.
The series gets underway on 30th/31st January and will be over 5km, thus giving participants the opportunity to ease into things and set targets for the year, but thereafter 8km and 5km will be on offer.
Results should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Virtual ERWL
With Name, club, age category along with the distance and time before midnight on Monday 1st February
Forthcoming ERWL Virtual fixtures 30th/31st January – 20/21st February – 3rd/4th March – 3rd/4th April