After years of litigation required to recognize and protect their innovative globally respected brand, Marathon Tours & Travel (MTT) officially received the registered trademark designation for its Seven Continents Club® (SCC). MTT established the SCC in 1995, when the inaugural Antarctica Marathon®& Half-Marathon made it possible for runners to conquer a marathon or half-marathon on all seven continents.
One of our early SCC adopters recalled, “I was reading the latest issue of Runner’s World and there was an article about the first marathon in Antarctica (1995) – somewhere I always wanted to go. I was able to get into the second running of the Antarctica Marathon® and it was on that trip when I decided to join this new, unique club and run a marathon on all seven continents.” Fast forward 27 years later and the SCC has grown from a short list of dedicated runners to 8108 members.
Even more impressive is the number of runners that have completed a marathon or half-marathon on all continents and have earned their Seven Continents Finisher Medal. To date, MTT has presented the Finisher Medal and Certificate to 557 men and 289 women who completed a marathon on all continents; and to 24 men and 49 women who completed a half-marathon on all seven continents. In addition, seven members have completed this quest multiple times.
A significant trend we see is the increase of women SCC Members and Finishers. Stephanie Madsen recalls, “When I discovered the Seven Continents Club®, I could not believe there was a group of people like me who thought it was a cool objective to run on all seven continents. Slowly, I started planning and decided I could make my objective even more interesting: run all seven in one year!”
Another major trend we see is the conversion of Abbott World Marathon Majors Six Star Finishers to Seven Continent Club® Finishers and vice versa. SCC Finisher David Klein explains, “Getting into the Antarctica Marathon® in 2016 really kicked it off. I was already in the process of doing the Abbott World Marathon Majors so three continents were already completed.”
The SCC membership spans across 87 countries. In addition to North America, a significant number of members also reside in Australia, China, Germany, New Zealand, Poland, South Africa and the U.K. The SCC is experiencing rapid expansion around the globe as more and more runners seek new goals.
“Whether you are one of our original adventurous members, number 8108 who just joined or have been thinking about joining…you can be confident you are with the leading recognized global running club,” noted Founder and CEO Thom Gilligan.