Athletics-Parkrun ditches records to be less ‘off-putting’

By Thomson Reuters Feb 8, 2024 | 1:45 PM

(Reuters) – Parkrun has removed speed records from its website to reduce the “off-putting” nature of them and dispel the perception that the runs are races, the organisation founded in London said on Thursday.

Parkrun, which organises free weekly 5km running events organised by volunteers, began with a group of 13 friends in a south-west London park in 2004 before growing into a worldwide activity.

It is to stop publishing data including most first-place finishes, age-grade and category speed records. Users will no longer have the ability to search for these records.

“What was clear is that there was a disconnect between the performance data displayed so prominently on the site, and our mission to create opportunities for as many people as possible to take part in parkrun events,” Parkrun said.

(Reporting by Tommy Lund in Gdansk, editing by Ed Osmond)