Sunday, September 15, 2013

Boston Marathon Registration Stays Open for Week Two

After a highly watched week of registration for the 2014 B.A.A. Boston Marathon, the field limit has not yet been reached and registration will continue through next week, beginning Monday at 10 a.m ET. Last week, only runners with times at least five minutes below their age group qualification mark were allowed to register.

Next week, all runners who qualified are allowed to register, but it will not be on a first come first served basis. Instead, the B.A.A. will wait until everyone wanting to has registered, and take the fastest times (compared to age group qualification marks) and accept those until the field limit i reached.

Earlier this week it was stated that 22,000 qualified runners will be accepted for the 2014 Marathon, despite the field size being increased by 9,000. A significant number of those additional spots are for runners who were unable to finish last years race, and it is speculated additional spots will go to charities, corporate sponsors and towns/cities.

Earlier this week Runner's World reported 11,300 people had registered for the race after four days, but there has been no update since Friday morning, which i when registration opened for people meeting the qualification time by five minutes or more. This could be because it's the weekend, but more likely it is because the B.A.A. doesn't want people to know exactly how many spots are left. Could this be because it wants some flexibility in allowing additional runners in, depending on how many people register next week?

UPDATE: Runner's World reports that 5,000 spots remain open.

Surftown Half Marathon Recap

The 2013 finisher's medal
All the way in the southwest corner of Rhode Island in Westerly, the Surftown Half Marathon is a flat, fast and scenic course that is provides a good opportunity to run fast.

The race is essentially a figure 8. You run two loops that are connected with a straightaway, which you run twice (once in each direction). For a race that's not huge, it was surprising how many people were along the course cheering runners on. It's not a city race or anything, but people were vocal, especially the many great volunteers.

There are several points of the race where you can take in a nice view of the water, but the course is mostly through small neighborhoods and streets. If you're looking for a race that's all about ocean views, try a different one in Rhode Island, such as Newport.

The biggest downside to the race was that its start was delayed about 15 minutes because of the long bathroom lines. And course, they didn't have nearly enough bathrooms.

Side note: I don't understand why races don't have enough of the portable bathrooms brought in. When there are hundreds or thousands of runners, you're going to need more then 15-20 bathrooms. Every time this happens (which is more frequently than anyone would hope) it bewilders me.

In any case, I enjoyed the race overall. It was low-key but still had good competition and a well organized race. I'm not sure if I'll run it again because of I had to wake up really early (4:55am) to drive there, but if I were local this would be on my yearly race calendar.

Overall Ranking: 7 (out of 10)
Course: 8
T-shirt: 7
Medal: 7

Friday, September 13, 2013

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

4,000 Runners Sign Up for Boston Marathon on Day 1

The 2014 Boston Marathon is filling up at a faster rate then the 2013 race did - which comes at no surprise. 4,000 people registered the first day registration opened, which is for runners that met the qualifying standards by 20 minutes or more.

Quoted in Runner's World, B.A.A. spokesperson Jack Fleming said, "We are running less than a couple thousand ahead of year-to-year. Better indicators will be on Wedneday when 10 minutes and faster qualifiers can submit their entry application, and of course on Friday, when 5 minutes and faster qualifies can submit their entry."

Based on Flemming's statement, it appears the B.A.A. expects registration to open at least until Friday. However, message boards are speculating the marathon could fill up during the BQ-5 registration period. We should know a lot more after Wednesday, when the next rush of registration will take place with BQ-10 runners.