The decision to cancel the New York City Marathon has been made. Mayor Michael Bloomberg made his final decision and the news was announced. Bloomberg and New York Road Runners president Mary Wittenberg released a joint statement to confirm the cancellation of the marathon.
“The Marathon has been an integral part of New York City’s life for 40 years and is an event tens of thousands of New Yorkers participate in and millions more watch. While holding the race would not require diverting resources from the recovery effort, it is clear that it has become the source of controversy and division.
“The marathon has always brought our city together and inspired us with stories of courage and determination. We would not want a cloud to hang over the race or its participants, and so we have decided to cancel it.
“We cannot allow a controversy over an athletic event — even one as meaningful as this — to distract attention away from all the critically important work that is being done to recover from the storm and get our city back on track. The New York Road Runners will have additional information in the days ahead for participants.”
It was the correct decision to cancel the marathon. It runs through all five Burroughs and allowing all of the images to be seen could prove to be insensitive by those hurt by the storm. The race starts on Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, which is located in Staten Island which was hit hard by Sandy.
The New York City Marathon generates an estimated $340 million for the city.
“It’s hard in these moments to know what’s best to do,” Wittenberg said. “The city believes this is best to do right now.” A short time later the call was made to cancel the race.