The second nationwide Kia Race Series was launched in Dublin yesterday and will be linking together nine road races around the country.
Last years event, created by Pop Up Events, led to eight course records being broken and a significant lift of almost 30 per cent in entries to the races across seven different counties.
The overall male and female winners of the Kia Race Series get to drive a brand-new Kia Stonic for one year and there is the added incentive of €9,000 bonus funds on offer for course records.
Kia will this year also be offering a “Masters” (aged 40+) prize of a trip for two to the European Masters for both male and female winners.
There are nine regional races in seven counties across Ireland in this year’s series which will start in March with The Streets of Portlaoise 5k. It is open to all abilities and is encouraging runners to #runyourrace, be it for fun, to set a personal best or to take on your first 5k.
“I was delighted to win the 2018 Race Series and to win five of the individual races.” said Kerry O ‘Flaherty of Newcastle AC.
“It was a great idea by Pop Up Races to organise the series and to have Kia on-board as a sponsor is fantastic. I encourage all runners to go out and set a target of running one of these races in 2019 and see what they can achieve.”
“The series drove up the standard of distance running in Ireland,” added National Marathon Champion Mick Clohisey of Raheny Shamrock Athletics Club.
“I’m looking forward to lining up in the series in 2019 and having some great competitive races.”
“Pop Up Races designed the race series to support grass roots athletics in Ireland and we were delighted to get involved last year for the first time,” said James Brooks, Managing Director of Kia Motors Ireland speaking to Sport for Business yesterday.
“The races in the series are local community races, organised by clubs as their annual fundraiser. The race series tries to attract elite athletes to come out and race each other, as racing is the best form of training.”
“The Kia Race Series has attracted big names in Irish athletics to local events, allowing the mass participation competitors get to race alongside our Irish internationals. The combination of supporting the grass roots of the sport and highlighting a healthy lifestyle was a perfect combination for Kia as a brand.”
“The series gave us massive exposure in 2018 and helped our local dealer network get involved in the events closest to them.”
“Last year we were delighted to bring the nationwide road race concept to market in partnership with Kia Motors Ireland,” added Brian Conroy, one of the co-founders of the company that provides timing equipment and event management services.
“In 2019 we aim to go bigger and better, with new races added.”
The KIA Race Series 2019
1. Streets of Portlaoise 5k: 17th March, 11am
2. Streets of Kilkenny 5k: 18th April 7:30pm
3. Bob Heffernan (Enfield, Co. Meath) 5k: Tuesday May 21st 8pm
4. Braveheart 5k (Trim), June 14th 8pm
5. Dunshaughlin (Meath) 10k Road Race: Saturday June 22nd, 7:30pm
6. Roscommon 10 Mile: July 6th, 10:30am
7. Edenderry (Offaly): 10 Mile, July 21st 9:30am
8. Castlepollard 5k (Westmeath) Wednesday Aug 14th, 8pm
9. The Lakes 10k (Blessington/Wicklow) September 7th, 11am
Image Credit: Sam Barnes, Sportsfile