Continental Airlines International Friendship Run

October 31, 2008

Runners – you have until 7:00 p.m. tonight at the Expo to register for tomorrow’s Continental Airlines International Friendship Run.

This fun run is free for international marathoners and $25 for all others.


Spectator Guide

October 31, 2008

Looking for a great place to watch the race?

Check out our spectator guide for cheering zones, arrival times, and lots of great ideas for watching the ING New York City Marathon.

Meet the Olympians!

October 31, 2008

America’s 2008 Olympic marathon team of Ryan Hall, Brian Sell, and Dathan Ritzenhein will appear at the NYRR booth at the ING New York City Marathon Health and Fitness Expo at 4:00 p.m. today.

Learn more about what’s going on at the expo here.

Wave Start Information in 5 Languages

October 30, 2008

Oooh, exciting:

[ ?posts_id=1419890&dest=-1]

[ ?posts_id=1421075&dest=-1]

[ ?posts_id=1421082&dest=-1]

[ ?posts_id=1421088&dest=-1]

[ ?posts_id=1421091&dest=-1]

Race Scoring: Not as Simple as It Looks?

October 30, 2008

For race scoring, it’s all about technology. For Sunday’s race, we will be utilizing 56 ChampionChip systems at 28 locations on the course. One location presents a particular problem: the 25K mark on the Queensboro Bridge.

The Queensboro Bridge is made mostly of iron. Transponder timing systems create magnetic fields that activate and detect each runner’s chip, but iron tends to dampen magnetic fields considerably. As a result, a standard setup at this location would not be able to create a magnetic field that is strong enough to read every runner’s chip.

We work closely with ChampionChip, the manufacturer of our timing systems and chips and they have provided us with a very unique solution, compliments of Reinier Gerritsen, the engineer behind much of the current system:

This is certainly the most complicated timing system that we will be using at the Marathon and might be the most complicated setup I’ve ever seen! In addition to the complex setup that is designed to optimize the magnetic field, the equipment will be specially pre-tuned to be more powerful and together, we should be able to read every runner’s chip at 25K.

Reinier Gerritsen

Reinier will be at 25K in person to help with this system, making the trip from Nijmegen, Netherlands, where ChampionChip has its headquarters. He almost wasn’t able to come, as he crashed on his mountain bike last week and broke several ribs. Our thanks go out to him for his dedication and all of his help! When you pass by 25K on the Queensboro Bridge, give a cheer to Reinier!

Super-Paula and Super-Team

October 30, 2008

A month ago, when Mary Wittenberg shared the news that Paula Radcliffe would be running the marathon again this year, my first words were–well, they’re not words usually heard in polite company.

Let me be the first to assure you that this has nothing to do with my opinion of Paula herself. There aren’t enough superlatives in the dictionary to do justice to her awesomeness. I mean, 2:15??????? No, my little hissy-fit had to do with the fact that about 12 hours before receiving the news of Paula’s plans to run in NYC, our editorial team had sent the marathon program to the printer. It was full of exciting predictions about the wide-open women’s race and it had a photo of a male runner on the cover because there were just too many incredible women in the field to attempt to choose the incredible-est among them.

So…we spent the next few days working closely with our extraordinarily accommodating design team to scrap all that and start over, then worked with our printer (also in the ranks of the World’s Most Patient and Understanding) to adjust the printing schedule, then finally worked minute-by-minute with the unflappable Bryan Emerson of NYRR’s business development squad to guide the delayed shipment of 42,000 programs to our fulfillment house, which worked round-the-clock to insert the programs into the goody bags that all of you will receive at the expo when you pick up your race materials.

Thanks to a lot of hard work by EVERYONE, and a few prayers, and amazing communication, it all got done in time, and your beautiful program, with Paula in all her glory (and a flatter stomach than any woman, even a 2:15 marathoner, has a right to 10 months after giving birth) is there at the Javits Center, waiting for you. We hope you enjoy it.

With all the anxiety now in the past, I can sincerely say that I can’t wait to watch Paula storm off the starting line on Sunday. She, too, has an incredible team working with her, and it’s hard to imagine the effort that has gone into their preparations over the past few months. The payoff for her–and all of us–is going to be one heck of a race.


The Expo Opens Today

October 30, 2008

The ING New York City Marathon Health and Fitness Expo opens today.

Location: Jacob Javits Convention Center, Halls 3E, 11th Avenue at 35th Street, Manhattan.

Doors open at 10:00 a.m.

There’s more info, including a schedule of expo activities, here.