On your mark. Get set. Register!
Registration for the May 5 Lincoln Marathon opens Saturday, but only in part.
The citywide course, which starts and finishes on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus, is a popular one.
Because the race is capped at 10,000 and an overwhelming number of half-marathoners snag up spots so quickly, this year race organizers want to give full marathon runners first dibs at registration — a full 13 days ahead.
“We really want the full marathon to be highlighted,” said Nancy Sutton, the race's co-director.
It's more expensive to run the full — $80 compared to $60 — which is good for event funds and the race's honor system, as technically half-marathon runners could sign up for the full but only compete in the half on race day.
“We're hoping (half-marathon runners) will be honest and wait to register until the 21st,” Sutton said.
There were 1,800 runners who registered for the full last year, but that number is likely to increase this year thanks to the early registration.
Organizers want to grow the race in the future, maybe as soon as 2014, but that will depend on grants and funding coming though. Right now, they're about halfway to the minimum $500,000 needed to make it happen.
Until then, organizers will closely watch how registration goes this year and tweak the system if need be, Sutton said.
As for meeting the 10,000 mark, which took 21 days last time around, this year Sutton is betting on mid-January.
“Most the people here say I'm being pessimistic and that it'll fill before that,” she laughed.
More information can be found at www.lincolnmarathon.org.