Interesting piece in today's Wall Street Journal about attempts to bring the Rock 'n' Roll franchise to New York City and the resistance the Competitor Group's encountered to host a Bronx-only route in the spring.
Is One New York Marathon Enough?
When I ran the New York City Marathon years ago, there was a record crowd of 32,000. Now it's 45,000. And I think I paid $60, compared to up to $250 today. Plus, if you ran at least a half marathon under a certain time, you got in as long as there were still slots, and for no additional cost. Now, you have to pay $11 just to get lucky. A lot has changed.
San Diego has the same problem with neighborhoods that go before the city council each year demanding the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon be rerouted away from them. In addition to traffic hassles, runners tend to generate more trash and noise than you might think. They also spend a lot of money on themselves that ends up being a huge boon to local businesses.
Personally, I'm suspicious of the NYRR's argument that having another marathon (that's run entirely within the most neglected borough along the NYC Marathon route) will somehow diminish the star power of their major money-maker. What about you?