Wednesday, December 15, 2010

NYC Half: Did You Get In?

A lot of NYC residents did not, and they are voicing their aggravation on the NYRR Facebook page today.

I'm still sifting thru stuff, though this appears to be the NYRR comment on the issue (again, this from the Facebook page, not from the main Web site. I'm not on other social media with NYRR, including Twitter, so there may be other stuff out there).

"The NYC Half is built on the model of the ING NYC Marathon. It's a world-class event that draws its field from around the world. As with the marathon, we segment the lottery into international, national, and local applicants. Understandably, local interest in the NYC Half is disproportionately high. We care deeply about you and hear your concerns, so we are building a guaranteed entry program for 2012."

The Web site says this:

"And there may be an additional opportunity to run this year—and let us stress “may be.” Don’t plan on it, don’t bank on it. If this opportunity happens, we’ll select additional runners in a second drawing on January 15, 2011."

For all the aggravation I've seen about NYRR policies and how they handle races, this is the biggest slam I've seen on Facebook (welcome to social media). Basically, the gripe is: A lot of non-NYC residents got in, a lot of NYC residents did not.

(I can't wait until the Brooklyn Half entry is posted.)

Seriously, though: NYC Half is a lottery. NYC Half is an international event that NYRR is putting a lot of resources into.

Yes, it's a fun race (I've done it once in its first year), no desire to do it again. (When you run through Times Square, there are tourists wondering what the heck is going on) Is it a destination race, i.e. a race you plan your entire season around ... ESPECIALLY if you live in New York City? (I'd argue no, though there are hundreds of Facebook posts that argue against me).

Just because NYRR calls it special, doesn't mean it is. (Sorry.) If you want to run a spring half, I promise, I'll give you a great list of fun races that don't involve a loop or two around Central Park. Long Island, New Jersey, Bear Mountain, Connecticut - halfs are everywhere. Including Brooklyn.

Let's not forget: assuming the Brooklyn race doesn't run into registration shenanigans: That's our race. That's your destination race if you're running a half marathon this spring. Don't get hung up on the hype. And I know there's a bit of hype about a possible Brooklyn Marathon? Maybe a half oughta be on the horizon first. In the fall.

Just my two cents. As always, I welcome other opinions and responses.

All this said: Congrats to those who got in to the NYC Half and best of luck.


Anonymous said...

I didn't get in. I'd love to run the race again (I ran 2007 and 2008), but I'm fine with not getting in. Just means I have more money to run other races. There are plenty.

The reality is that NYRR can't win. There are many many many many more people that want to run than Central Park can accommodate. No matter how you slice it, people that don't get in will be upset.

When registration opened, people complained that it was too expensive. It is expensive because it is very popular and there are many people (around the world apparently) willing to pay. This is simple supply and demand.

Now, when many people didn't get in, we see more and more complaints. Trust me, even if hundreds of people drop their membership and stop running races, there will be many others taking their place and NYRR races will continue to sell out.

My suggestion is that people register for the 13.1 New York race, being held in Flushing Meadow Park, on April 2.

By the way, Brooklyn Half filled very quickly last year, and with no warning, so when that opens for registration, don't delay...

Chicken Underwear said...

I paid for the NYC Half once and then felt it was to much money to be in a Nike ad. The course is kinda boring after the fist time.

It is about 13 miles from the Cloisters to the Battery.

Shut down the West Side Hwy and 20 or 30 Thousand people can do that

Anonymous said...

I registered and didn't get in. I'm bummed, and it seems that NYRR just isn't handling the whole process, or the fallout, very well. There are a lot of people asking for clarity on the breakdown of how many lottery slots go to locals/non-locals and no response.

I run one half every year, and want it to be a "big" one--fun, interesting course (and running through Times Square sounds like both)and a relatively big race that is organized and has big energy that I need to feed off of. Thus why I wanted in. Will I go the charity route, or just head to LI? Remains to be seen.

heather said...

Any idea when then Brooklyn Half will open for registration?