Saturday, December 31, 2011

2012 Brooklyn Half: Qualifier for NYC Marathon

Passing along a reference in the fine print to this year's qualifying standards (note they change in 2013):

"You must have met the appropriate qualifying time between January 1, 2011 and January 31, 2012 (2012 NYC Half, Boston Marathon, and NYRR Brooklyn Half-Marathon times will also be accepted). Include the race name and date with your application."

Something to keep in mind if you don't get in via lottery.

$216 for NY Marathon?

Sigh, it's true (and more if you're not a member). Reminder, however, that the NYC Half was on the high end, so we shouldn't be surprised. NYC is hurting, and it's passing along fee increases - and the NYC Marathon is passing it along to us as well.

Given the demand to get into the race, this is definitely a sustainable price (think about the prices for Broadway productions), so don't expect a reduction.

One request for NYRR: Disclose how much you are paying for appearance fees, and how that has changed over the years. To keep the elite athletes coming here is a deliberate (and defensible) decision. However, if that's the reason why the fees are being boosted, then tell the running community that.

I'm pretty sure there are more expensive marathons in the U.S. (My readers will confirm - and I will research!) But this certainly is one of the highest.

On that note: Happy New Year! My apologies for the scarcity of posts over the past few months - ironically, an increased focus on running contributed. 2012, I'm hoping to get back to a regular posting, including race results and a renewed focus on local runners.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Changes in Empire State Building Race Entries

Still processing, but note that entries open tomorrow at noon, closes Sunday

*Evening race
*$100 entry fee
*Non-elite runners put in a lottery
*Entry field limited to 600 participants (roughly)

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Saturday Long Run

Boston is in 4 1/2 months, so the long runs are beginning to start. Today's route, about 16+ miles, is an oldie but goodie - Brooklyn Heights to Prospect Park, back over the Brooklyn Bridge, around lower Manhattan, back up to the Williamsburg Bridge and then back to Brooklyn Heights.

The great thing about this: one guy in the group pointed out this absolutely wonderful public restroom on River Terrace (before you go into the waterfront) between Warren and Vecsey Street. It's clean, it has water fountains, it's warm. Huge fan, especially since it's getting hard to find good places for water.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Jingle Bell Jog Now a 6K

Umm, yeah. "Unexpected construction work on Center Drive" (did it suddenly get blocked off in the past week?) makes the course now 3.7 miles rather than 4 miles.

The good thing: There will be a ton of PRs!

No course map is available, though the race starts and finishes on Center Drive.

Entry fees are $50 thru Dec. 9. Proceeds benefit NYRR's Youth Programs.

NYC Half Prices: $117 for NYRR Members

Would you pay $117 ($128 if you're not a member of NYRR) to run a half marathon?

This easily could be the most expensive road half-marathon in the continental U.S. Maybe the world. (If you've seen anything, more costly - not including some of the trail runs - holler).

I appreciate that the costs to run through Times Square on an early Sunday morning are huge. But ...

NYRR comments on why the costs are so high:

"Operating costs that significantly affect the race -- like gas, insurance, and bridge tolls -- continue to rise, which increases the cost of doing business in the world's greatest city for running. Our race fee has gone up due to these increased race operation costs and city agency fees, which are required to maintain our world-class standards in safety and quality."

It's a legitimate concern (though the last time I checked the NYC Half route didn't actually go past any tollbooths - but maybe that's next!). It's unclear here how much the elite appearance fees, or lack of a title sponsor, also affect the cost. (Personally, I'd rather this be a great half marathon to showcase the best local talent, rather than one of the many elite events NYRR puts on, though that's just me.)

Here's an alternative suggestion. Run any one of the NYRR half marathons (the Manhattan Half right now costs $25) and donate the rest to any one of the deserving local charities (City Harvest is my current choice) or the NYRR Foundation to support youth running in the city.

I've got a qualification slot to run this March, but I'm pretty sure I'll be racing elsewhere that day.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

2012 NYRR Races .... and the NYC Half

Several races are now open for the January-March period on the NYRR Website including the Manhattan Half on Jan. 21.

And the NYC Half lottery opens on Dec. 5 and is open for two weeks. It'll be interesting to see how this year's version goes - and how many people are able to get in because they ran in 4 of the 5 borough half marathons (including the canceled Bronx Half.) No idea yet on the price.