Ticket-holders feel 'conned' after race rescheduled to venue 150 km away on different date

Some local fitness enthusiasts are looking for their money back after purchasing tickets to a popular extreme obstacle course race event.

A Rugged Maniac event was scheduled for May 28 at Chicopee Ski Hill in Kitchener. But, weeks before the event, it was rescheduled to a park in Uxbridge, Ont. more than 150 kilometres away with a new date of Sept. 3, 2022.

“We got kind of a standard email written back that just basically said ‘Sorry for the inconvenience. We’re not issuing anybody refunds,’ which I thought was not very honourable on their part,” said Tara Pedersen from Cambridge.

Pedersen said her gym, Proactive Training Cambridge, had about 100 members planning to go to the race as a team building event.

“Everyone was willing to go. Everyone was ready and excited to go, and they just pulled the carpet out from under us,” she said.

Pedersen said she’s feeling “a lot of frustration” and “anger.”

“With 100 participants they would’ve collected $7,000,” she said.

Now the gym is hosting their own event.

“We purely feel conned that we purchased tickets as a group being told that it was going to be hosted at a specific venue on a specific day,” said Emerson Petri from Proactive Training Cambridge. “Because of this we are now hosting our very own event called the ‘ProActive Gauntlet’ this Saturday at Dickson Park in Cambridge. We have worked hard over the last week to plan and organize our own family friendly outdoor workout event that will have various obstacles throughout the day”

COMPANY RESPONDS

CTV News reached out to the company who did not respond specifically to whether or not ticket holders are able to get a refund, but did say in an email statement:

“While we’re excited about our return to Canadian Rugged Maniac events, unforeseen circumstances have caused us to find a replacement venue prompting many with questions,” said Kaitlyn Greenleaf, VP, USA TODAY NETWORK Ventures Endurance. “We encourage fans to reach out to info@ruggedmaniac.com as we work to deliver an improved course and experience on race day!”

Rugged Maniac's website states that all sales are final, unless the event is cancelled due pandemic restrictions and that a date or venue change is not a cancellation.

“They consider moving it to a different time of year at a different location entirely as making changes,” said ticket holder Amanda Desjardine.

A local lawyer said buyers should ensure they read the fine print before purchasing anything online.

“A lot of us, nowadays, with everything very virtual, a lot of us click without reading it,” said Khaled Wahab from Wahab Law. “This may be the case where a lot of these buyers did not read the fine print. The fine print says we can change these events.”

CTV News reached out to Chicopee Ski Hill but did not hear back.

In an email sent to one of the ticket holders we spoke to, Rugged Maniac said those with tickets can transfer it to another runner or defer it to another event this year or next.

Another 2023 Rugged Maniac Kitchener event is yet to be finalized.