OVO Energy invites cycling fans on a virtual reality ride inspired by the 2017 Women’s Tour
Spectators at the OVO Energy Women’s Tour can compete for the coveted leader’s jersey whilst also making their local communities greener
OVO Energy Women’s Tour kicks off 7th-11th June across five stages 2017
Virtual Cycling Challenge invites spectators on an immersive virtual reality experience inspired by the Tour
For every person who participates, OVO Energy will donate three trees to local communities as part of its commitment to powering a sustainable future
London, 5th June 2017 - For the first time ever, spectators can experience the OVO Energy Women’s Tour as the cyclists do through an immersive virtual reality experience. Set to be the most challenging Women’s Tour yet, with longer distances and tougher climbs, OVO Energy invites spectators to get riding at the Virtual Cycling Challenge.
Tackling one of the Tour's most gruelling hill climbs - the climb to Middleton Top in Derbyshire - fans can put on a virtual reality headset, jump on a bike, and pedal to complete the climb in the fastest time possible for the chance to win a replica OVO Energy leader's jersey. For every person who participates, OVO Energy will donate three trees to their local community as part of its commitment to powering a sustainable future.
Chris Houghton, Managing Director, OVO Energy, said: “The Women’s Tour is a flagship event on the UCI Women's WorldTour calendar, celebrating incredible female cycling talent and welcoming UK communities to share in the excitement of the day.
As the leading independent energy supplier in the UK, we’re passionate about powering a sustainable future to benefit everyone by using smart technology. Through our title sponsorship of the OVO Energy Women’s Tour and Tour of Britain, we’re energising the spectator experience, encouraging fans to join the ride through innovative VR technology while also helping them make their communities greener.”
The Virtual Cycling Challenge features 360 degree video footage, allowing fans to enjoy stunning scenery along the route with professional cyclist Jessie Walker narrating the ride with tips, tactics and encouragement. Footage speeds up the faster the cyclist pedals with times recorded on the leaderboard throughout each day. The overall female, male and child winners at each stage will receive a replica OVO Energy leader's jersey.
Those wishing to experience the thrill of the ride without breaking a sweat can virtually follow top cycling pro Jessie Walker through a headset experience, watching as she cycles up to Middleton Top. Spectators can even put themselves in the race leader’s shoes at the OVO Energy Photo Finish booth where they can snap and share a GIF of their unique finish line photo.
For each participant, OVO Energy will donate three trees to their local community working in partnership with The Conservation Volunteers and local councils to source and plant trees.
Adam Rostom, Chief Marketing Officer, OVO Energy, said: “We are always looking for creative ways to reach new and existing customers and demonstrate that we are a different kind of energy company - one that’s innovative and better for everyone. Tapping enthusiast passion around the power of cycling provides us with a new entry point into a conversation with consumers about energy, technology and sustainability directly in the communities where they live and play.”
OVO Energy has engaged Havas Sports & Entertainment Cake based in London to activate the Virtual Cycling Challenge located in the fan zone at the finish line at each stage.
Jessie Walker, Professional Cyclist, said: “The OVO Energy Women’s Tour is a momentous occasion for local people and I can’t wait to meet all the spectators and supporters that cheer the competitors on. The virtual reality experience will put fans through their paces so they get a taster of what it takes to compete in the Tours and what a professional cyclist may be up against.”
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About OVO Energy
OVO Energy is one of the largest independent energy suppliers in Britain. Founded in 2009 by entrepreneur Stephen Fitzpatrick, OVO Energy redesigned the energy experience to be fair, effortless, green and simple for all customers. With a mission of creating the world’s most trusted energy company, OVO Energy has attracted nearly 700,000 customers and has been recognised as the uSwitch Energy Supplier of the Year, ranking number one in the 2015 and 2016 Which? energy customer satisfaction surveys.
About the Women’s Tour
The Women’s Tour is the UK’s biggest professional women’s cycle race and a part of the UCI Women’s World Tour, taking place between Wednesday 7 and Sunday 11 June 2017. The top 15 cycling teams will take part in the OVO Energy Women’s Tour this year, including the number one team Boels Dolmans, of defending race champion Lizzie Deignan, and Wiggle HIGH5. For the first time, London will host the final stage of the OVO Energy Women’s Tour on Sunday 11 June, celebrating its fourth year since launching in 2014.