World triathlon champion, Chris McCormack, explains why he thinks athletes across the globe should all ‘Racecheck’
World champion triathlete Chris McCormack (also known as Macca), stumbled across Racecheck when he wanted to find an event and check what other athletes thought of it. He is now the biggest fan, can’t recommend it enough and talks through why it is the must go to platform for athletes across the globe.
What attracted you to Racecheck?
To be honest I think what attracted me most to the Racecheck platform was the interest in accessing events and learning about others feedback on those events. In the modern era of events and racing, there is an endless amount of races you can actually do, and the delivery of those races vary from exceptional to downright terrible. I have been a professional athlete my entire life, and since retiring from the sport, my wife and I were both looking to do events that we hadn’t done before and in unique and interesting destinations. With the simple fact that we intended to use those trips as a bit of a holiday, it was important to us, to ensure that the event we selected had merit and wasn’t a disaster of an event to compete in. By chance I stumbled across Racecheck, on the basis that we wanted to know what other peoples experiences were of the events we were looking at doing. One thing led to another, and before I knew it I was obsessed with the platform and realised the major advantages it can deliver to a community if we all engage in supporting each other with our experiences. The reviews of races are what brought me to the platform, and had me sign up myself. Since then I have seen it morph into a platform that delivers so much more and actually aligns you with events and people that suit your training and racing needs. I would not say I was attracted to Racecheck. I would most certainly say I became a fan by using, and in the same way many people use and book trips on holidays by using TripAdvisor, Racecheck provided that same sort of insurance for me as a participant to aid in my choice of events, and to actually streamline that entire entry process. It is pretty cool.
“….before I knew it I was obsessed with the platform and realised the major advantages it can deliver to a community if we all engage in supporting each other with our experiences.”
Why do you use Racecheck and recommend it to other athletes?
More than anything I use the platform as a source of confidence. I think people gather strength in their decision making process, when they get the feedback or recommendations of their peers. Racecheck has built a peer community through aligning likeminded people (people who like to compete in endurance events) and given them a platform to share their experiences and recommendations on events all over the world. The amazing thing is, the platform has grown so much it has started to feed itself, with event organisers seeing the need to be a part of this review platform, and literally every race in the world being recorded on the platform. It is a remarkable site, and I encourage people to use it, simply because more people create more value for everyone. It drives event organisers to be better, and gives all athletes the ability to make informed and value choices around races they want to do. It is awesome. I always recommend awesome to people.
“The amazing thing is, the platform has grown so much it has started to feed itself, with event organisers seeing the need to be a part of this review platform, and literally every race in the world being recorded on the platform.”
What has been your favourite event experience and why?
I found when I was using the platform, I started looking at events I had done in the past and wanted to see what other people had written about on their experiences in that same race. You can sit for hours reading others peoples stories and feedback on an event, especially the races you have done. My greatest event experience, which I have now shared on the Racecheck platform was the Challenge Roth event. As a professional I won this event 4 times, and it became my favourite race in the world to compete in. The atmosphere of the race, the course design and history, the pressure that race brought to me as an athlete. I loved everything about the race. The experience of that event for me was always exceptional and the surrounding stimuli like people and course made it great, but what it meant to me personally to actually race on the biggest stage in the world, against the best in the world at that period of time, in their home country, and win it year after year was truly special. It is an amazing race, (as you can read by my review on Racecheck).
What in your opinion makes Racecheck stand out?
I think the passion and the thought behind the platform is what makes it stand out. The team in the background are athletes themselves who began this project to help others, and not with any commercial interest at heart. That is the key to success in anything. When things are done with passion at the epicentre, the outcome is most often remarkable. I think the standout is the substance of the platform and the people behind it. They are people first and this is key, so most of the growth and decision making processes have been built out of creating value for the participant and not to hit some targeted value in the marketplace. This is what makes it different from others who have tried to enter this space and continually fail. Projects like this need to have relevance and a commitment to the bigger picture, and Racecheck in every capacity does that head and shoulders above everything else on the market. I think with time, it will be the only way you enter a race. It is really really cool.
“When things are done with passion at the epicentre, the outcome is most often remarkable.”
Have your taken part in an event that was highly recommended via a Racecheck rating that you might not otherwise have thought of?
As a matter of fact both my wife and I competed in an event together, not because of the recommendations of Racecheck specifically, but because the feedback on the platform of the event we were considering made us ultimately bite the bullet and enter.
What’s your race calendar looking like for 2019?
Now I am retired as a professional, I will be honest my heavy racing days are done. My family sacrificed so much for my selfish endeavour in pursuing World title wins and 20 years as a professional. Now we look at events we can do together and something that is fun, and we do that by being relatively spontaneous and deciding we will do an event literally 4 weeks out from that event. It is all about fun and inclusion now in our family and I enjoy that. So to answer the question, I don’t really have a set racing schedule like we lived on for years, but we have some ideas of places we are going for holiday or work and we look to Racecheck for events in those areas that may appeal to us. We run now more than we do triathlon, so this is much easier.
What advice would you give our athletes looking to plan their season?
The key to planning any season really is having good feedback from coaches or a group of people, aligning within a good training community or environment (this can be done much easier now with great online communities established) and then building a structured plan and goals around what you know you can and can’t do. I work inside the MXEndurance community which is a global group of 1200 athletes at the moment (and growing) that support each other and hold each other accountable, and race and train together. It has embedded some of the worlds best professionals who come in and support the members along with coaches and access to so much. These are the communities you need to join and access the expertise and the confidence to make decisions for yourself and no the right questions to ask your coach. My advice to any one is to be part of something bigger than you the individual and leverage the accountability and energy that these communities and team can bring into your life. Social Endurance is critical for success in my opinion and being surrounded by people who think and dream the same way you do.
Racecheck is a web and app community helping recreational athletes find, book and plan great endurance events through the power of race reviews, while also helping organisers promote their races to a highly relevant audience.