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BAA postpones registration for 2021 Boston Marathon

The BAA announced today it's postponing registration for next year's Marathon, which normally begins in September, while a new advisory group considers when the group can even hold a safe race again.

he Medical & Event Operations Advisory Group will recommend strategies that address the health and safety of participants, volunteers, staff, and community members. Recommendations will be developed in accordance with the most current guidelines issued for large-scale events by the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control. The group will develop framework for the B.A.A. that addresses risk factors specific to the Boston Marathon including size and other local and international considerations for the pandemic. Outcomes, including an updated registration timeline for the 125th Boston Marathon, will be shared.

This year's race was originally postponed from Patriots Day to September because of Covid-19 concerns, then canceled completely.

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Comments

Start preparing for 2022.

Possible they could do something in the fall next year if vaccine rollout goes perfect, but no chance they are going to run a regular race in Boston next April. If things improve and they can do something on short notice next year, great. Otherwise ‘22 a more realistic goal for everyone.

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Voting closed 12

just abolishing the race entirely. Time to face the reality that the Boston Marathon has long since lost all meaning and significance it once had to the Boston area.

What once was a strictly amateur race open to everyone has long since been turned into just another overhyped commercial enterprise for the privlidged (i.e. the "elite" runners and their early start times) that leeches on public facilities and agencies for its existence.

The Boston Marathon has run its course (sorry for the pun). It should be allowed to die gracefully.

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I mean, why ban one race and allow others?

Of course, unlike the likes of the James Joyce Ramble, the Boston Marathon is an economic boom for the region, but I guess the local tourist industry is doing okay, no?

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I'm not a fan of the marathon myself but you are right it brings in huge money for tourism.

Also let's face it, to be considered a world class city you gotta have a few things that you are known for. Otherwise you get forgotten about. Education, Boston Marathon, Revolutionary War etc are our things that the world knows about us in a positive way (along with the Red Sox.) It would be crazy to dump it .

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Voting closed 22

But as others pointed out, hating on the Marathon is Roadman's thing (amongst other things.) I would probably kill him to find out that it's been an elite competition since at least the end of the Second World War (though some of the battles in the 30s could push that date back.) The irony is that the people he really hates are the average shlubs who fund raised their way in and are happy with a 6 hour time.

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Found this one dating back to 2015 here (search "roadman") - and I swear I've seen this posted by him a couple other times since.

The Marathon has never been more popular, and is a huge economic contributor to the city, it's obvious to anyone who has spent time in downtown/Back Bay/Fenway in the week leading up to it.

It's not that interesting to the UHub crowd to go into the logistics of the "elite" field start, but in short it's not just Olympians up there, it's an accessible standard for a high level competitive runner who has a shot (& in the one odd year where non-elite field participants placed, they got prize money too!).

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The impacts to drivers in Reading are intolerable!

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Voting closed 12

Huh? The race used to be primarily for elites/qualifiers, and now the vast majority of the race is amateurs racing to raise money for charities.

Sounds like you haven’t run the race — or even attended — in years.

It’s one of the premier EVENTS in New England, and one of the 6 world majors.

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is still a thing?

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the Boston Marathon has long since lost all meaning and significance it once had to the Boston area.

Those huge crowds of people watching and cheering aren't out-of-towners. For a lot of us, it's a great event and a fun way to spend a Monday.

(also, complaining about the elites and that it's not open to everyone (and how would that work? Is the race supposed to just be infinitely large to accomodate every possible interested runner?) kinda just makes you sound bitter that you can't qualify...for a lot of runners, the fact that it's hard to get into is part of the prestige and the importance of the race!)

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Voting closed 8

during the early stage of the pandemic, without evident problems. Much of its route was through denser neighborhoods than Wellesley, Newton, or Brookline. What can we learn from them?

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This:

What can we learn from them?

is an interesting question, Ron. Thanks for bringing that up.

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I think we can learn that they're a bunch of lucky S.O.Bs, that's what.

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Voting closed 23

Not sure how we would say whether there were problems from the March marathon or not. LA almost surely had undetected community spread at that point.

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Voting closed 6

The biggest concern isn't necessarily the actual race component outdoors (though certainly with dense outdoor crowds at the start + big international travel it's not irrelevant either), but the indoor activities related. One of the big issues for Boston is the start in Hopkinton.

I don't know a ton about the LA Marathon, but it looks like it starts downtown. With Boston starting in a small town far outside the city, the BAA relies on busing runners out to Hopkinton, in a fairly major operation - runners go to the Common early in the morning, then an army of school buses and coaches ferry almost 30,000 people to the start. The time on that bus is a huge concern area. There's no good way around it.

With the unique challenges of the course being such a big part of Boston (downhill overall, but with hills at unique & punishing points), moving the start isn't an option, nor is asking people to get out there on their own, never mind the traffic jam.

I don't want to call it the "best" option - that would be a vaccine being rolled out late next month & be able to have a race in the spring, which is possible but highly unlikely - but the good, likely scenario is to have a vaccine rolled out well enough to have a race in September 2021.

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It requires mass movement of people to the starting line.

LA and NYC are loops ... you don't need to move people from one end to the other.

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Voting closed 6

Ummm, the NY marathon starts on Staten Island.

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Their route starts near downtown, at Dodger Stadium, and ends near the beach in Santa Monica.

Description and Map

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NYC marathon was a loop early in its history - something like four laps around some reservoir (Central Park?) before moving to the five-borough route.
.
NYC route, of course, is all within the city limits - unlike our Metrowest-Hub race.

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Voting closed 8

Where in holy writ does it say that the marathon has to run from Hopkinton to Boston?

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they would have required a marathon route that was at least somewhat loop-like, and was not net downhill.

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...considers when the group can even hold a safe race again.

I don't see where the BAA announcement expresses this doom-and-gloom about the long term future of the marathon. Right now they're only talking about the 2021 race.

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Voting closed 5

I never started.

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