2015 Race Director Update #4


19th Annual Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon, April 24-26

       Full Marathon, Half Marathon & Relay, 5K, Health & Fitness Expo, Family Events & Kids Races

Race Director Update #4
7 weeks until Race Weekend

Thank you for registering for the 19th Annual Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon & Half Marathon weekend, which includes the 2015 RRCA New Jersey State Championship race in the marathon distance. In an effort to help make your participation more enjoyable throughout the entire race weekend, this is the fourth in a series of weekly messages containing important information. Copies of these messages will also be available on our Website. Links to them will be posted on both Facebook and Twitter.

New for 2015:

  • The Full, Half and Relay races will all start at 7:30 am this year.
  • There are no speed restrictions for athletes in wheelchairs in the full and half marathon.

The final on-course training run will be held, as always, exactly three weeks prior to race day.  This year that will be on Sunday, April 5th.  Click here for details, and to “Join” the training run.

Important New Information:

  • Guaranteed Finish Area Parking has sold out and registration for it is closed.

Expo Speakers and Classes

Each year, during both days of our Health & Fitness Expo, we present helpful, fun, informative classes (active participation) and presentations to help you relax and learn more about running, training and racing.

Here is the currentl confirmed list:
Aerobics Class, Shape/Tone Class, Core – Life Time Fitness Style, Stretching, ChiRunning, Course Overview, Dealing with Racing Anxiety, Kinesio Taping: The Art and Science of Quicker Recovery, Race Pacing Strategy, and more.  The current and final Speaker and Class schedule will be available on our Facebook “Events” page and I will list the actual day/time schedule in future RD Updates.

All classes and presentations are free, and we invite you to consult the schedule when deciding when to arrive to pick up your race packet and shop at the Expo.


The Start Area & Start Process:

The Start Area:

This update will deal with the start area layout and start process for the April 26th races.  Please note: The start area for the ShapingNJ 5K on April 25th, will be on the Long Branch Oceanfront Promenade, at the “Great Lawn”, between the Ocean Place Resort and Rooney’s Restaurant (not in Monmouth Park).

There will be signs to help you find your way around the start area.  We’ll be publishing an electronic version of the “2015 Information Book” soon, which will contain the layout of the start area for your reference. Having a general idea of the start area will likely help you navigate easier on race day morning. BTW – Not much has changed from the 2014 layout.

The Start Area is only accessible from two secure entrances/portals:  From the West Parking Lots – the “Grandstand” portal for athletes, spectators and volunteers from the lots on the west side of Oceanport Ave. and Monmouth Park; and from the South Parking Lots – the “Clubhouse” portal from VIP parking, the Bus Terminal and the parking lots on the south side of Monmouth Park.

If you drive to the race you will enter the start area via one of the two security portals from the west or south.  The police will direct you to whichever lots are currently most available. Please do not try to decide on you own which lot you’d like to park in, unless you’re either dropping someone off or are a VIP, Elite Qualifier or Race Staff.  The police with direct you as you approach Monmouth Park and you must follow their directions.  Arrive early to get spaces closer to either of the portals/entrances.  The later you arrive the longer the walk will be from your vehicle to the start area.

Please review the Race Day Security Information before race day and make sure that your supporters do as well.

The Start Area will contain the following:

  • Security Portals/entrances – once you cross the portal you will have entered a secure area and special rules apply
  • VIP Area and VIP Parking area
  • Info Desk (there will be Ask Me volunteers roaming the start area (as they were in the expo the previous two days) – ask them questions such as: Where is the …?, What time does the ….? For more complex questions/issues please go to the Info Desk, located in front of the turnstiles leading into the Shelter Area (the previous Expo Area)
  • Volunteer Sign-in Desk
  • Gear Drop Area (trucks)
  • Portable Toilets
  • Charity Rally Area
  • Race Day Race Packet Pick-up Area
  • Shelter Area and Bathrooms
  • Hydration Station (water)
  • Bus Terminal for: Relay athletes, spectators, VIPs, volunteers and race staff
  • Start Line and Start Corrals


Gear Drop-off on Race Day:

We will have trucks parked a short walk from the Start Line to store your gear and transport it to the Finish Area for you.

Very Important!!!  We will accept only the clear “Race Day Gear Bag” which was provided at race packet pick-up.

This baggage system has been put in place for its simplicity. Tear off the gear drop tag from the bottom portion of your bib, attach it to the clear bag you received at packet pick-up, put clothing for the finish area in the bag and close it with the cords on the bag. On race day morning, look for the truck number that will include your bib number and give the volunteers your gear bag.  We do the rest!  You gear bag will be waiting for you just past the finish line and after the athlete food tent.

Please do not leave valuables in the gear bag. We cannot be responsible for lost car keys, cell phones, little black books, money, rings, etc.

A Coffee/Food vendor will be available in the secure area near the turnstiles. Medical personnel will be on hand inside the secure area.

The Start Process:

Athletes in Wheelchairs in Corral AA, start at 7:30 am;
Marathon, Half Marathon & Relay Corral A starts shortly after AA and is followed by each of the remaining corrals, with about 60-90 second separation intervals between each of them.  Each corral will be individually called to the start line and be held there until the starter signals the start for the next corral. There will not be a mass start as you may have experienced at other races.

Start Corrals:

Your bib will have your corral assignment on it. The corrals are meant to keep athletes of roughly similar paces grouped together.  Remember there is no time penalty for being in any corral. (Except for competitive athletes in the open divisions, as they are timed via gun time/not chip time and will all start in corral A.  For everyone else your start time will begin only when your bib / timing strip crosses the start line, thereby ensuring a fair start no matter which corral you are assigned.)

To gain access to a particular corral you must show your bib number and corral assignment for that particular corral to the corral attendant.  Please note: while you may choose to freely move back to a corral behind the one you’ve been assigned, you may not move forward to an earlier corral.

If everyone follows the intent of the corrals faster racers will not be impeded, slower racers will not be jostled, tripping accidents will not occur, and everyone’s race day start experience will be better.  We appreciate your help in keeping this a stress free, and safe start process for everyone.

Corrals will begin loading at 6:55 am for all Sunday races and corrals will close at 7:25 am (except for the last corral which will close when the last athlete has crossed the start line.  Multiple announcements will be made to let you know as these important times are approaching (about to open and about to close).

Please note: The start line will close after the last athlete in the last corral has crossed the start line.  If you arrive after the start line has closed you will not be allowed to start!  Please plan ahead in order to be in your assigned corral before it has closed.

IMPORTANT: Participants are required to complete the Emergency Information on the reverse-side of their Bibs using a waterproof pen/marker.  Please fill it out before race day and it will be one less thing to think about!  It’s for your safety that we require this information.  If it’s not needed during your race, no one will see the information, however if medical treatment is needed, that information could be extremely important in providing the proper assistance in a timely manner.

Other Start Area Items:

  • There will be a hydration station (water) near the start line, so make sure that you top of your hydration!
  • There will be a coffee/food stand in the start area selling: coffee, baked goods and other items that runners, spectators and race staff might like, such as bars, fruit, etc.
  • There will be portable toilets near the start corrals, and bathrooms inside the “Grandstand” building (where the Expo was the previous 2-days).
  • If the weather doesn’t cooperate, shelter for many will be available inside the “Grandstand” building, and under the overhang on the track side of the building.
  • Shuttle buses will be available to take relay team members to the Relay Transition Area between 7:15 am and 7:35 am ONLY.
  • For spectators and race staff, shuttle buses to the Finish Area drop off point will be available between 7:30 am and 8:30 am. The drop off point is located about 4 blocks from the Finish Area, near mile 9.6 of the race course.  Please note: the return buses to Monmouth Park will load in front of the Ocean Place Resort, on Ocean Blvd only.
  • There will be music at the start area featuring New Jersey artists!

Brief Summary of Pre-start Items:

Fill out the back of your bib and pin it to your shirt the night before; be on-time for your race (expect traffic delays if planning to arrive after 5:45 am); drop a gear bag at the appropriate truck; top off your hydration and use the portable restrooms or bathrooms as required; load into the assigned corral early; find and join your pace group; smile; enjoy the experience and have a great day!!!  It’s a fairly simple process.  Don’t let the details above worry you!  Read it in sections; ask questions via email and/or our Social Media pages as required. If confused on race day, just ask, as help will be close.  Directional signs will also be posted to provide guidance and PA announcements will remind you of upcoming important times.


Below is an important summary from Race Director Update #1:


 Smooth Sailing Smooth Sailing on Race Day:

  1. Getting to the Start: Carpool and be in the parking lots about 75-120 minutes before the race start (7:30 am), or take the Special NJ Marathon Race Day Train. Click here to register for the train.
  1. Post-Race: Getting home: Take a regularly scheduled NJ Transit train, (Please note: these trains don’t stop at Monmouth Park), walk to your vehicle in one of the parking lots near the Finish Area, or take one of our free shuttle buses back to your vehicle at Monmouth Park.
  1. Pre-paid parking at Monmouth Park: We strongly suggest this option. Click here to register.
  1. Pre-paid parking near the Finish Area: SOLD OUT Guaranteed Parking for spectators at Seven President’s Oceanfront Park in Long Branch.
  1. Race Day Gear Check: Take advantage of this free service for dry, warm clothing after your race!
  2. Race Packet Pick-up: Free at the Expo, paid service on race day morning. Click here to register.
  1. Race Day Security Information for Spectators (click the link and scroll down to the “Security Info”).


I hope that this information will help to take most of the pre-race stress out of your race start experience and help you to enjoy your time with us at the Shore.

Best wishes during your training and on race day!


Joe Gigas
Race Director
Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon and Half Marathon
Presented by: Life Time Fitness

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