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Standard Chartered revamps the fourth series of The Greatest Race on Earth

Search ASIA Travel Tips .com Latest Travel News Friday, 19 October 2007

Standard Chartered has revamped the fourth series of The Greatest Race on Earth (GROE) to focus more on the national team competition. In addition, a new initiative to engage the public as well as the runners called The Environment Challenge has also been introduced for this year’s series.

Along with the US$ 1.08 million prize pool on offer to the national teams themselves, participating GROE countries now also stand to benefit from an additional US$ 1 million as part of the Environment Challenge.

The marathon relay aspect of GROE is now focused completely on the Nations Challenge, where up to four teams (two men’s and two women’s) can be entered by any country. This year, the overall Nations Challenge prize pool has been increased to US$1.08million. This remains the largest guaranteed prize pool in the athletics world to date. The overall winners of the Men’s and Women’s Nations Challenges will take away US$ 100,000 each, as well as the coveted Gold Baton – a 9 carat solid gold relay baton that has come to symbolise the teamwork needed to win this challenging team marathon relay series. US$ 840,000 will then be shared among the top three men’s and women’s teams from the six regions of; Europe & Oceania, Africa, South East Asia, North East Asia, Americas, and South Asia & the Middle East.

The new Environment Challenge encourages people to select and undertake up to eight environmental pledges suggested on, and then nominate the GROE nation they wish their pledge(s) to support. Standard Chartered, will donate US$ 1 million to support vital environmental conservation projects, working in partnership with WWF, that will benefit the three nations that generate the most environmental pledges per capita. The results will be announced following the final GROE Marathon in Hong Kong on Monday 18th February 2008.

GROE, coined the ‘World Cup of Marathons’, has grown to become a truly international event fielding a breadth of elite athletes. With the arrival of the new series format and the Environment Challenge, a record number of national teams are participating, with 54 from 34 countries signing up. New countries include the USA, Brazil, Peru, Germany, Lebanon, Japan and Russia.

Kenya has won three GROE Nations Challenge titles so far, narrowly beating Zimbabwe in the 2006/07 series to claim first place and win the Gold Baton. With an increase in the number of participating countries and faster average race times, this year’s series is set to be more competitive than ever.

Peter Sands, Standard Chartered Group Chief Executive, said, “With 34 nations now competing, The Greatest Race on Earth provides a compelling opportunity to reach out to people across the world. Through our sponsorship of the unique marathons in Kenya, Mumbai, Singapore and Hong Kong, Standard Chartered is focused on building awareness of the environmental challenges many nations face. If we can encourage the people we meet through our everyday business to make just a small change to they way they live, we can show how everyone, together, can truly help build a more sustainable future.”

Anyone who makes a pledge as part of the ‘Greatest Race on Earth: Race for a Living Planet’ can upload a personal photo, to be woven into the GROE World Mosaic, symbolising how everyone can all contribute in our daily lives as part of one planet.

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