Coronavirus: Prestigious New York and Berlin Marathons Cancelled

Prestigious New York and Berlin Marathons Canceled

The 2020 edition should have been exceptional because it was the 50th New York Marathon

The New York and Berlin marathons were officially cancelled on Wednesday due to a coronavirus pandemic, a new sign that the return of mass sports events is not yet happening.

Late races in the calendar of marathons, New York and Berlin are also the two most followed, the first for its popular fervour and the second for its performances which give the “the” of the discipline.

“Not possible to organize the marathon”

It is only the second time that the New York marathon, originally scheduled for November 1, has been cancelled, after the parenthesis of 2012 following the passage of Hurricane Sandy.

The 2020 edition should have been exceptional because it was the 50th New York Marathon, created in 1970, four years before that of Berlin, which had never been cancelled in 46 years of existence.

Scheduled for September 27, the German event was suspended because it was subject to the ban on any gathering of more than 5,000 people in the capital, which runs until October 24. “As hard as we have worked, it is currently not possible to organize the marathon,” said the Berlin organizers on the official website.

“A huge disappointment”

“Canceling this year’s marathon is a huge disappointment for everyone associated with it,” said New York Road Runners CEO Michael Capiraso, quoted in a statement, “but that was clearly the way to go. of health security. ”

Globally, New York was by far the city most affected by Covid-19, which caused more than 22,000 deaths. The New York organizers will offer the possibility to those registered to have their registration fees reimbursed or to postpone their participation to 2021, 2022 or 2023.

“The safety of spectators and runners”

“I applaud the New York Road Runners’ decision to make the health and safety of spectators and runners a priority,” said New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, who was quoted in the statement as saying.

Even though it is far from being the most competitive in terms of time, due to a difficult route, the New York marathon is the most popular annual long-distance race in the world. During the 2019 edition, he broke the record for the number of participants who crossed the finish line of a marathon, with 53,640 runners.

NYRR vice president of media Chris Weiller said before the cancellation the organization was counting on “more than 53,000” runners arriving this year, including about 25,000 from abroad.

Asked about the cost of this cancellation, he said that the organizing committee would receive compensation under an insurance contract. The 50th New York Marathon is now scheduled for November 7th, 2021.

What about the Paris Marathon?

Boston and Tokyo already cancelled, several of the most important marathons have not yet thrown in the towel. As for the Paris marathon, already postponed from April to October, the organizers “are still working to ensure that the marathon is held on the scheduled date (October 18)”, they said.

“If we postponed the marathon in the fall, it is precisely to allow time and see how the situation will evolve,” said a spokesperson for ASO (Amaury Sports Organization), organizer of the event.

Another race scheduled for October, the 11th specifically, the Chicago Marathon: “We are not yet able to say whether the marathon will be held or not,” said Alex Sawyer, communications manager for the event. “We are working closely with the city (Chicago) authorities and will communicate our decision to our runners as soon as possible,” she added.

Another major race on the calendar, the London Marathon plans, for the moment, to organize the event on October 4th, instead of April 26th as initially planned.

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