By Chris Lotsbom
December 20, 2012
(c) 2012 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved
(20-Dec) — Earlier today, organizers of the ING New York City Marathon announced three options for entrants of the 2012 ING New York City Marathon, which was cancelled some seven weeks ago due to the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy. The menu of choices surprisingly includes an entry fee refund.
“Thank you all for your patience during the last seven weeks as we have worked through issues related to the cancellation of the 2012 ING New York City Marathon,” an e-mail, sent to all marathon entrants, read. “Hurricane Sandy was a devastating event for our city, and our thoughts and prayers remain with the victims and their families as they work to rebuild their homes and lives.”
After issuing an apology for the seven-week delay, the New York Road Runners (NYRR) detailed three solutions which they hope will “meet the needs of the many different groups associated with the Marathon.”
All marathon entrants who had not cancelled prior to October 24, 2012, were given three options. First, marathon entrants may choose to receive a refund of their 2012 entry fee.
“While NYRR has always had a no-refund policy for the Marathon, given these extraordinary circumstances, we are offering runners who were entered in the 2012 Marathon, and were unable to run due to the cancellation, the opportunity to obtain a full refund of their 2012 Marathon entry fee,” the statement reads. This refund excludes an $11 processing fee.
Second, entrants may choose to receive a guaranteed entry for the 2013, 2014, or 2015 editions of the ING New York City Marathon. However, “runners will be required to pay all processing and entry fees at the time of application (in the given year), with fees maintained at the same rate as those paid in 2012,” said the statement.
The third and final option is a guaranteed entry to the 2013 NYC Half, which will be run on March 17. Those who chose this option will be required to pay all processing and entry fees at the time of application. The e-mail also notes that availability for this option will be limited, likely due to the event’s smaller field size.
The e-mail sent out today and posted on ingnycmarathon.org also addresses issues pertaining to charity runners, international runners who were part of a travel package, and those who purchased tickets for race-week events.
“All runners who signed up to run the 2012 Marathon on behalf of Team for Kids or one of the official ING New York City Marathon charities and obtained their entry from NYRR will be offered the same options,” read the statement. “The fundraising you did in connection with the 2012 Marathon will entitle you to any of the options above. If your 2012 Marathon entry fee was paid through your charity partner, you will be contacted directly by your charity.”
As for international runners who gained entry to the 2012 Marathon as part of a travel package with an official ING New York City Marathon International Travel Partner, they will be contacted directly by their International Travel Partner representative, the statement said.
Those holding tickets for the Marathon Eve Dinner, Reserved Grandstand Seating, Blue Line Lounge Presented by Tata Consultancy Services, Marathon in a Motorcoach, or TrackMyRunnersTM via TXT will all receive full refunds.
Entrants in the NYRR Dash to the Finish Line 5K will receive a separate e-mail outlining further details.
“Individual e-mails will be sent to all runners on January 10, 2013, and information will be posted on the Marathon website (www.ingnycmarathon.org), providing further details and terms and conditions for the obtaining of refunds and the choosing of an option,” the statement says. “The option selection window will open on January 11, 2013, and you will have until January 25, 2013, to choose your option.”
Organizers ask that entrants act quickly once they receive the e-mail, as there will be no default option. Those with questions are urged to contact NYRR customer service by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
“On behalf of all of us at NYRR, thank you for your patience and support, wrote NYRR President and CEO Mary Wittenberg at the conclusion of the statement. “Our commitment is to work hard over the coming year to serve our runners and community and to return the ING New York City Marathon to being our city’s best day.”
Immediate responses to the statement –which were also posted on the event’s Facebook page– were mixed, though a number of athletes expressed appreciation towards NYRR. Within an hour of posting, the message had received over 500 likes and more than 225 comments.
“Good to hear. The options seem more than reasonable to me!” wrote Katie Senese of Illinois.
“Not much of a resolution. Why can’t they transfer our fees over from this year to next?” asked Jane Wegman Murphy. “So I will be paying over $500 to run this marathon…BS! I too came up and spent money at the Expo and around town, all to be told that I’ll have to pay my entry fee again.”
Some had already made up their mind, choosing to run next year’s race.
“A fair resolution. Well done NYRR. I am in for 2013!” said Scott A. Ettin.
“Best Christmas gift ever! THANK YOU!” wrote Leslie Decker Wetherholt.
The 2013 edition of the ING New York City Marathon will be run on Sunday, November 3.
Discuss on the boards: NYC Marathon Resolution
Editor’s note: Race Results Weekly is owned by David Monti, the NYC Marathon professional athlete coordinator.