Monday, October 25, 2010

Running Races vs. Cycling Races

As I become more and more immersed in the local cycling scene, I'm realizing there's a huge difference between the way cycling race directors run their shows compared to how running races do it.

Here's an example, the Boston Marathon sold out this year in 8 hours. 8 hours! And the race isn't until April. And you have to qualify to get in, meaning only roughly 10% of the .1% of the population that runs (and finishes!) a marathon are even eligible to register! (I pulled the 10% number out of the air. I have no idea how many people actually qualify for Boston, but it's not a lot.)

Another example: The Ogden Marathon, a small-town-Utah marathon that I ran back in 2008, is sold out for 2011. The race is May 21, 2011. That's just under 7 months away. 7 months!

Another good example is the St. George Marathon. You enter a lottery in April that is decided the first week of May for a marathon that's run in October, 5 months later.

Bike racing? The first race I'm planning on for next year is the Bear Lake Classic road race, which should take place on May 14. I say "should take place" because so far, their website only acknowledges the 2010 race, which took place in mid-May. I have no idea when it will update the information for 2011, or when registration even opens. I will need to keep my eye on it as the date approaches.

And did I mention that the governing body for bike racing, USA Cycling, requires you to have a license to register that is good for a calendar year at a time and costs $65. If you don't have this, you have to buy a "one-day" license at your race for $10, and your results aren't tracked over the course of the year as they would be if you were a "licensed" racer. Contrast this to the governing body of running races, USATF (USA Track and Field), which sets down some rules but lets just about anyone anywhere run in anything they want to.

I don't get it. I just don't get it.

1 comment:

Ingrid said...

So, are you saying you like the way runs are handled, better than how bike races are handled, or vice versa?