NYRR AFFIRMS SUPPORT FOR USA DISTANCE RUNNERS IN 2009
By David Monti
March 5, 2009
(c) 2009 Race Results Weekly, alll rights reserved
American distance runners will continue to enjoy strong financial
support from the New York Road Runners this year, president and chief
executive officer Mary Wittenberg announced today. The leading
not-for-profit race organizer in the United States will contribute
$190,000 this year to support the USA Distance Project, a collection of
training groups throughout the country, and will provide direct
financial backing to post-collegiate track races at the Brutus Hamilton
Invitational at Cal Berkeley next month.
"Our goal is to get people running worldwide, and to build our sport,"
said Wittenberg in a prepared statement. "We believe American stars
are critical in helping to achieve that end goal."
Since 2006, NYRR has contributed upwards of $1.5 million directly to
U.S. distance running by funding USA Championships events, USA-only
prize money, and financial support via the USA Distance Project. In
that time, more than $735,000 has gone toward U.S. post-collegiate
running through the USA Distance Project. This year's donation was
raised almost entirely through the NYRR Champion's Circle charity
program at last year's ING New York City Marathon.
Six post-collegiate training groups will receive support: Mammoth Track
Club in Mammoth Lakes, Calif.; Team USA Minnesota in Minneapolis,
Minn.; Marathon Performance in Eugene, Ore.; Tempo Sports in Boulder,
Colo.; McMillan Elite in Flagstaff, Ariz.; and ZAP Fitness in Blowing
Rock, N.C. Athletes who train under these groups include stars like
Ryan Hall, Deena Kastor, Dathan Ritzenhein, Katie McGregor and Jen
"Distance running is extremely difficult," explained Wittenberg.
"Stars aren't created in a vacuum. We need to fund and support the
development of athletes in a strategic and holistic way."
The NYRR's partnership with the University of California at Berkeley is
historic. Working with Cal head coach Tony Sandoval, the inaugural
NYRR Distance Carnival will be held on the first day of the Brutus
Hamilton Invitational on Friday, April 24. Post-collegiate races at
5000m, 10,000m and the 3000m steeplechase will be held, and the NYRR
will assist with meet logistics, arrangement of pacemakers, and the
seeding of heats. This meet will offer one of the best opportunities
for athletes to make qualifying marks for the 2007 IAAF World
Championships in Athletics.
With a staff of over 100 people, the NYRR manages running races on all
surfaces throughout the year totalling to about 300,000 entrants. The
organization was founded in 1958, and is the owner and founder of the
ING New York City Marathon.