SBJ/November 14-20, 2011/Opinion

New York City is already a two-marathon town

I was personally and professionally disappointed to see the upcoming inaugural Brooklyn Marathon go unmentioned in Fred Dreier’s article “Is New York City a two-marathon town?” (SportsBusiness Journal, Oct. 31-Nov. 6). While I admit that the Brooklyn Marathon as constituted is small (capped at 350 runners and nearly sold out as of this writing), a small amount of research on MarathonGuide or via NYCRuns.com (imho, the most comprehensive local resource on local racing and running clubs) would have revealed that we have planned a USATF-certified marathon in Prospect Park to address exactly the problems Competitor [Group] is having, namely building a broad base of community, political and sponsor support.

This year’s Brooklyn Marathon is supported by good friends at the Prospect Park Alliance and Councilman Brad Lander’s office, the Brooklyn running clubs, and is 100 percent locally sponsored.

We are cognizant of the path Fred Lebow took many years ago and fully believe that a second major local marathon should be a locally grown product that builds its support organically. Any simple market analysis indicates there is a market for more marathons in New York City.

Competitor is running into walls here for exactly the same reason Wal-Mart and many other national chains have. New York doesn’t embrace cookie cutter products; New York embraces innovation and small business, and New York City is indeed already a two-marathon town.

Steve Lastoe
New York City

Lastoe is founder of New York City Runs Inc.


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