This weekend’s events here in NYC were clouded in controversy, as everyone by now knows the NYC Marathon was canceled. Which as I noted in my previous blog was “still on”, there was a lot of negative publicity around the continuation of this event. The public’s opinion overturned Mayor Bloomberg and Mary Whittenberg’s announcement to hold the race, normally a few people yelling to change something doesn’t work, but when these voices reached mass numbers the Mayor’s office and NYRR didn’t budge what really forced their hand was the voices changed the opinion of the sponsors who one after the other pulled out from the event. Now this information is semi public or is not 1000% founded but I have to believe that as the sponsors withdrew NYRR finally realizing the PR nightmare they had spun was out of control canceled the Marathon on Friday at 530pm because the sponsors pulled out.
NYRR dropped the ball at every turn! While in line to get bib#s and packet pickup we were told it was canceled, on the second day of the expo! No one won here, no one felt better because the Marathon for so many people was their 1st Marathon, my girl friend was devastated because she trained so hard, felt really strong going into the race, and now with my surgery on Nov 15thcannot reschedule another Marathon till well after I recover. We looked at various races while filing into the expo with somber expressions on the faces of every runner. There was a team behind us from Australia that made the trip to NYC because they heard the race was still on, can you imagine!!!! It was fine to cancel the Marathon but NYRR should have canceled the race back on Wed when they said they would make a call. Instead they cowardly deferred to the Mayor’s office which, for finance reasons of their own maybe (I don’t know) allowed thousands of travelers to descend upon a crippled city, and stimulate the economy. Unfounded, and just my thoughts that maybe the Mayor’s office made this unsatisfactory decision based on some backwards financial figures.
I personally feel if NYRR had taken a step back and had announced to the world that we are having the race but here is how we are going to give back to the communities and as I said last time, inspire the “nay-sayers” to become “motivated do-ers” then this whole event could have been a beacon of relief, charity, and positive impact in a time when those in need, truly need serious help. I saw this first hand, as a group organized inside my community headed by friend and teammate on Asphalt Green Tri Club Jordan Metzl founded a spur of the moment charity run into Staten Island to deliver needed supplies, goods, and support. I was amongst these runners each carrying whatever they could; I had nearly 40+ pounds of supplies because I knew I would have to walk to the shelters.
I have decided to split this post because this write up is slanted toward the negatives that occurred going into the Marathon, and frankly so many positive things were accomplished on 11/4 that those events deserve their own space and should not be clouded by this negativity. Look for Part2 shortly, plenty of great photos to follow from Staten Island, ferry trip, hiking in supplies, and more.