THOMPSON, CT (WFSB) – Hundreds of local runners spent hundreds of dollars on a weekend race that won’t be happening.
The company in charge closed their race operation with little warning.
Channel 3 spoke with a local family looking for a refund.
The race, the Warrior Dash, is one of the obstacle courses where people scale over walls.
More than 300 people were going to the race set to take place this weekend.
Alyssa Blumenthal has made the Warrior Dash an annual tradition.
“It’s kind of a beginning one, so all of my friends, no matter what level you’re at physically, can do it and we look forward to it every year,” Blumenthal said.
The race is scheduled every year at Thompson Speedway. It was supposed to return this weekend, until at the end of July, Warrior Dash’s parent company, Red Frog Events, announced on its Facebook page they, “decided to exit the OCR industry to focus on our other endeavors.”
“Everyone was surprised. No one was like, ‘oh I saw this coming,’” Blumenthal said.
Matt Davis runs Obstacle Racing Media and is an insider when it comes to these types of runs. He said Warrior Dash was one of the mainstays.
“They were taking registrations up until that point. They had 10 more events scheduled for that year, there was no indication,” Davis said.
In fact, other than not being able to register, there’s no indication on the Warrior Dash website that Connecticut’s race is cancelled or that the company left the business.
Blumenthal and her family are looking for refunds. In all, their eight-person party spent $800 on the race.
“I still haven’t gotten a reply and it’s been almost two weeks,” Blumenthal said.
Channel 3 reached out to the Chicago-based company as well, giving Warrior Dash and Red Frog 48 hours to respond.
They haven’t returned our calls or emails.
The Warrior Dash is also teamed up with a national charity. They tout they’ve raised more than $15 million for it and the Blumenthal family hopes if they don’t get a refund, their dollars will at least go towards the charity.
“At least put it in our name, something in our name that you donated the money,” said Paula Edinger.
Meanwhile, other companies not associated with Warrior Dash are offering to take in the runners affected.
“A lot of fly-by nights came and went, and other races stepped in and said, ‘hey, if you’ve got a receipt from another race, we’ll help you,’ so the practice has been around,” Davis said.
Blumenthal wishes she could do it on her own terms.
“It would be ideal to get a refund and then, if we wanted to register for another race, which we probably will, then we can make that decision on our own,” Blumenthal said.
Channel 3 reached out to the state and they are aware of what’s happening. They say it’s tougher when the company involved is not in the state, but they say filing a complaint is the first step in getting a refund.
If you would like to file a complaint with the Department of Consumer Protection, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org with receipts and screenshots of efforts to contact the company.