Uncorked COVID-19 Impact and Procedures

COVID-19 Event Impacts and Procedures

As we navigate our ever-changing world, our mission to inspire you to live an active lifestyle remains. Now, more than ever, the Sports Backers team wants to keep you moving, but only in a way that keeps our participants, volunteers, staff, and communities safe and healthy. Our team has been working hard to revise our event plans to meet the current social distancing requirements so that we can get back to celebrating your active lifestyles through our events in the safest way possible.

With individual’s safety and transmission mitigation in mind, we have been working on new event modifications and procedures that will allow us to safely operate the Uncorked Half Marathon and 5k. These policies and procedures are based on current recommendations for COVID-19 safety protocols and are subject to change at any time.

What Sports Backers staff will be doing:

  • All staff and volunteers will be required to wear a mask while on the event premise at all times
  • Cleaning and sanitizing high-traffic areas at the start/finish area and on the course at regular intervals.
  • Reducing communal surfaces that encourage group or repeat usage
  • Hand sanitizer available for usage throughout the event including at the start and finish area and at water stops.
  • Post-race food available will be pre-portioned and packaged for each participant


Uncorked Half Marathon and 5k Changes:

  • The Uncorked Half Marathon and 5k distances will have separate start times to keep participants separate. The half marathon will start at 7:30am and the 5k will start at 10:00am.
  • The start line and finish line will be in separate locations to minimize large group gatherings. We will also have a socially distant start corral set up for each distance to keep runners that are about to start separate from each other.
  • The first half marathon start will begin at 7:30 am. We will start 16 runners every two minutes, or at the discretion of the start line staff. We will follow the same procedures for the 5k start at 10:00am.
  • The 3:30-hour half marathon course limit from the last starting group is still in effect. Please note that if you are starting in the last group that you still must be able to complete the course within the 3:30-hour time limit.
  • All participants are required to bring their own personal hydration system to use during the race. We will have touchless bottle filling stations at the start/finish area and minimal water stops along the course so that bottles can be refilled, but these will be self-served and there will not be water cups provided along the course.
  • Water stops will be located around the course near miles and 1.5, 5, 6, 8.5, 9.5, and 11. Each water stop will have Nuun sports drink and water and you will be able to self-serve to refill your water bottle or hydration pack. These stops will be cup-less.
  • Masks will be required in the race corrals and in the start and finish of the race area. You will be required to wear your mask until crossing the start line and then will be required to put it on again after crossing the finish line. We encourage, but do not require, that all participants wear their masks while on the course.
  • Medals and post-race food will be pre-packaged together in the finish area and you can pick up your package after finishing the race.
  • Anywhere that lines could form, we will have distance markers to denote where participants should stand.
  • All spectators are required to wear a mask when at the start/finish are or when spread along the course.


Social Distancing Procedures at the Uncorked Half Marathon and 5k

  • Participants will be required to wear a mask when not racing. Masks are required in the start area, in start corrals and again in the finish area. All runners are encouraged to wear their masks through the start line and take it off once you are clear of the star area. Participants are encouraged but not required to wear a mask while racing on the course.
  • If you plan to stick around New Kent Winery and enjoy a glass of wine post-race, we ask that you continue to wear your mask until you are seated in a socially distant location throughout the winery. Once seated, you may remove your mask while enjoying your post-race beverage, but if you get up to move throughout the winery we ask that you please put your mask back on.
  • We will offer pre-race packet pick up on Friday, April 30 from 3pm-6pm at Sports Backers Stadium – 100 Avenue of Champions Richmond, VA 23230. There will be race day pick up at New Kent Winery available from 6am-7:30am for the half marathon and 7:30am-10:00am for the 5k.
  • We will have the start line and corral area set up in a socially distant manner with markings on the ground denoting where participants should stand.
  • Participants should remain socially distant when not in the start corral.
  • Once you arrive at the start corral, you will load into the corral and find an open marked space to stand and wait. You will be given instructions on when to move forward towards the start line. Masks are required while in the start corral.
  • All runners will be required to carry a water bottle or wear a hydration pack during the race. We will have touchless bottle filling stations at the start and along the course, but you are required to bring a hydration carrying device with you along the course.
  • If passing any participant on the course, please allow 6ft between you and the other participant or pedestrian. If 6ft is not available to you, please wait until you can pass safely.
  • At the finish area, participants who have already finished will not be permitted to stand near the finish line to wait for participants still on the course. If waiting for another runner at the finish area, please make sure to allow for 6ft between you anyone else that is waiting or consider waiting outside the finish area.
  • All post-race beverages will be served outside of the Winery and all servers will be masked. We ask that you wear your mask when ordering a beverage. Additional beverage sales will also occur outside of the Winery and we encourage participants not to enter the Winery building.

We ask that all high-risk persons not participate in the in-person 2021 Uncorked Half Marathon and 5k. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Persons over the age of 65
  • Those who are immunocompromised or undergoing treatment for an ongoing disease such as cancer, HIV, liver or heart disease
  • Those with moderate to severe asthma

Our policies and procedures will continue to be updated as we learn more about COVID-19 and how to keep our participants, volunteers, staff, and communities safe and healthy. These procedures are subject to change at any time and we appreciate your flexibility as we enter a new phase of social distancing races.

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