11 May 2022, Cape Town, South Africa: Celebrating its third year, the SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge 2022 will return to the annual road-running calendar serving as a symbol of the country’s rise out of the ashes of the pandemic.

The 2022 edition of the popular virtual event was launched in Cape Town on 11 May 2022, where it was revealed that the country’s top female runners would once again be competing for the prestigious SPAR Grand Prix series title across six races in five different provinces.

The SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge 2022 will build on the runaway success of last year’s race when entries were open nationwide, taking the most beautiful race to all corners of the country (and abroad). As a virtual event, there are no geographic boundaries to the race, while participants get to decide on their route, pace, and whether to do it alone, with friends, family or as a community.

This year’s theme, captured through the hashtag, #IRise, is a celebration of how South African women conquer their challenges. The SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge 2022 encourages all participants to harness their power, adopt the #IRise philosophy and become part of a collaborative community that collectively rises above their challenges.

The SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge was launched in 2020 as a homage to South African women’s resilience and strength amid the uncertainty and strife brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the government has lifted the state of disaster, the pandemic remains in our midst, which prompted SPAR once again to take the beautiful race into the virtual space.

“For the safety of our participants, based on the fluctuating COVID-19 regulations and the unprecedented times we find ourselves in, we have gone virtual again this year,” said Charlene Subbarayan, SPAR Group Sponsorship & Events Manager. “However, that does not mean we have compromised on the fun. Get your friends together, work out a route in your local community and share all the fun by tagging us in your pictures #IRise #YourRaceYourPace.”

Online entries are now open for the SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge 2022. SPAR invites women across the country to join in on Saturday, 3 September 2022, anytime between 06h00 and 18h00 (subject to government lockdown regulations). Participants can run, jog, or walk their virtual challenge at their own pace anywhere in South Africa.

The SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge is more than a race, it is a celebration of female camaraderie and is a social compact aimed at improving the lives of our fellow humans. Each year the Virtual Challenge adopts a charitable cause that addresses a broader societal issue.

By entering this year’s SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge, participants will make a meaningful contribution to the lives of young girls. For every entry, a pack of sanitary pads will be donated to help keep a girl in school through the SPAR Petals Project. The Project advocates for a shame-free education for all young women, and through their contributions, participants will help these girls rise above their challenges.

“The SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge has grown beyond the boundaries of racecourses or geographical areas. It is a movement that celebrates the resilience of women across the breadth and width of the country,” said Mike Prentice, SPAR Group Marketing Executive. “The sight of women from different walks of life taking to the streets and trails around South Africa has filled us with immense pride. SPAR looks forward to the thousands of posts to light up social media platforms.”

The Virtual Challenge also boasts a dedicated group of brand ambassadors who help spread the #IRise message and promote the causes that we support. The list includes familiar fan favourites and some new ambassadors eager to get SA excited about the challenge.

Entry to the SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge is R120, and as part of the entry fee, every participant will receive a virtual challenge pack. The pack includes an official virtual challenge t-shirt, access to the My Virtual Challenge digital magazine, a face buff and a medal.

This year there are even more ways to join in the fun online. Participants can visit the official race website, sparvirtualchallenge.co.za to generate their race number and finish line certificate – perfect for pre and post-race selfies! Use #IRise and #SPARVirtualChallenge when posting to join the challenge community online!

For more information and to find out how to enter, visit www.sparvirtualchallenge.co.za. Entries are limited to 60 000 participants – enter now to avoid disappointment.

The SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge and Theme:

Difficulty calls us to rise, and in that rising, we learn what we are capable of. The theme the SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge 2022 is built on the concept of rising despite difficulty, like a phoenix from the ashes, which the Virtual Challenge itself has done amidst a global pandemic. In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity, and there is a plethora of opportunity for creativity amidst the current challenges that we face.

This year we anticipate rising again as the SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge 2022, in celebration of a South African stalwart, accompanied by a powerful digital strategy and virtual challenge, to become the most inclusive challenge South Africa has seen.

Over the years, the challenge has brought women from all walks of life together, to make a difference in our communities and once again, this year will be no different,

as we rise to the challenge as a nation, leaving no woman (or man) behind. While the challenge is still fully focused on women, we encourage women to bring their families, friends and animals, and welcome everyone, irrespective of gender, for this inclusive challenge.




Date: 3 September 2022

Time: 06h00 – 18h00 (subject to current lockdown restrictions) 

Location: Virtual Event (participants can select own route and distance) 

Entries+Website: https://sparvirtualchallenge.co.za/