The WTC recently announced that it would not continue with Ironman NYC due to various issues and feedback. A few friends asked my opinion on this and so I felt compelled to do a quick write up.
“Producing an event in a large urban market is complex and challenging. The combination of the ferries, transition in Palisades Interstate Park, and the difficulty for our spectators to watch much of the inaugural race all combined to create an experience that needed substantial improvement. Also, the inability to have amplified sound in Riverside Park after 10 p.m. does not allow us to offer the IRONMAN finish line experience our athletes love.”
Originally from: http://ironman.com/mediacenter/ironman-discontinues-aquadraat-sports-ironman-u.s.-championship#ixzz278CYB0VF
I think that the above statement clearly explains why Ironman can’t take place in the NYC area. I have lived here for a long time and am just amazed they were even able to pull off the 2012 race!
The Expo: It was located on the West Side, a quick skateboard ride from work got me there. It had quite a lot of venders and I enjoyed it. I never go to the opening night dinners at these things as I would rather find my own food sources so I have no opinion on that.
Transition: Was Transition hard to get to? Perhaps. I feel that being a local I have a different perspective on this. I know Pallisades Park very well as it’s where I train. Rather than take the 3AM ferry to transition, I simply hopped in a cab at 5AM having the driver drop me off at the park entrance. I had 2 extra hours of sleep under my belt! That also meant the night before Abbe, Claire and I could have that many more beers.
On Spectating: This was a disaster. $50 per person to get into Pallisades Park top cheer? C’mon. The Manhattan side of things was just the opposite though and anyone could stand along the course and at times people were ON the course and didn’t even know it.
Race Fees: This race was $850 instead of $600. It was even raised to $1200 for the anticipated 2013 event causing an uproar. Once again, I am a bit jaded here as I live in New York. I look at it like this… Last year I raced Ironman Arizona. I paid for Race Fee, Hotel, Airfare, Food, Bike Transport and vacation days from work. All of theses things might have tripled the $850 IMNY fee. Therefore, being that it was a local race for me all I paid for was the entry.
Why wasn’t the race in NYC the whole time: To shut down city streets for upwards of 17 hours is insane. Especially in a race consisting of 2500 people where you might not see a runner for a few minutes, compared to the NYC Marathon and it’s steady stream of 40,000 runners.
A lot of people complained about the course as well and how hard the run was. It’s an Ironman, it’s supposed to be challenging otherwise everyone would do it!
Overall I think it was a great race. The organizers had to tackle some serious urban style obstacles and I think they did a fantastic job. I am sad that there won’t be another IMNY, but am honored to have been able to race in the historic event.