2015 Race Director Update #1

_New_Jersey_Marathon_Primary_Logo_2014_2

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

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

Race Director Update #1
10 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 first in a series of weekly messages containing important information. Copies of these messages will also be available on our website and 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 the full marathon wheelchair division this year.

Smooth Sailing Smooth Sailing on Race Day:

This section contains important information to help race day go smoothly for you and your support team.

1. Getting to the Start: We are always working hard to ensure that getting to the Start Line on race day morning is as smooth and easy as possible, and look forward to your continued cooperation in helping to reduce any potential delays.

Ways to make your access to the Start Line easier:

a) Take the Special NJ Marathon Race Day Train which will arrive at Monmouth Park Station at about 6:25 am. Click here for the train schedule. Click here to register for our special race day train.  Over the years this has proven to be the easiest way to arrive at Monmouth Park for our Sunday races.

b) If planning to arrive via motor vehicle there are two important things which you can do to make your commute easier on Race Day Morning:

i. Carpool, and
ii. Plan on being in the parking lots around Monmouth Park about 75-120 minutes prior to the start of your race.

Please note: With over 5,000 vehicles trying to get into the parking lots at Monmouth Park, most at about the same time, there can be heavy traffic on race day morning from every direction.

Important:  Parking lots fill up fast and the closest parking spots are filled first.  The last vehicles to arrive may be required to park almost a mile from the start line and will require additional time to walk to the start area.  Plan ahead so that you don’t miss your assigned corral (they close at 7:20 am on race day).

c) Get dropped off at our special Athlete Drop-off Location inside the Clubhouse Main Gate on Victor Ave.   Please watch for signs for that area as you approach Monmouth Park on Rt. 36.  Please note: Dropping off athletes in any other location than the designated one is not allowed as heavy traffic makes it dangerous and it will slow down parking for others.

Other things to know about Sunday race transportation:

2. Busing from the start area: will be free and available for relay athletes, spectators, volunteers and race staff:

a) buses will depart from the NJ Marathon and Half Marathon bus terminal in Monmouth Park to the following locations:

i) the relay transition area in Monmouth Beach: for relay athletes and parents/guardians of relay athletes under 18 only.
ii) the NJ Marathon and Half Marathon bus terminal on Union Ave. in Long Branch for: spectators, volunteers and race staff.  This bus terminal is a block from mile 9.75 of the race courses and within 4 blocks of the finish area.  Please note: This bus station is NOT used for transportation back to Monmouth Park.  Please see the paragraph below for return busing information to Monmouth Park.

3. Post-Race Transportation: When leaving the Finish Area there are several post-race transportation options to consider.

a. Walk to Long Branch Station and take a regularly scheduled NJ Transit train home. Please note: These trains DO NOT STOP at Monmouth Park.

b. Walk to your vehicle which is parked in one of the lots around the Finish Area.

c. Walk to our Finish Area bus depot (in front of the Ocean Place Resort) for a free bus ride back to Monmouth Park. Please note: Due to road closures from the race, these buses cannot begin the return trip to Monmouth Park until about 9:30 am, and will begin boarding by starting corral order until any backlog has been reduced. We invite you to take advantage of the Finish Line Festival (food, music, raffles, awards ceremonies, cheering for other athletes, etc.) until the busing begins.

4. Pre-paid parking at Monmouth Park:  By prepaying the $5 per car parking fee prior to race day exiting the parking lots will be much faster. Otherwise it will cost $10 to exit the parking lots post-race and be slower. We strongly suggest that you take advantage of the pre-paid option. Click here to register for Start Area Parking. Tickets will also be on sale during Packet Pick-up on Friday and Saturday.

5. Pre-paid parking near the Finish Area: We offer Guaranteed Finish Area Parking at Seven President’s Oceanfront Park in Long Branch for $15. Click here to register for Guaranteed Finish Area Parking. Please note: There is no shuttle transportation from this parking lot to the Start Area as it is intended for your supporters and those needing a quick exit after the race.

Other things to know about Sunday races:

6. Gear Check: If you would like to have warm/dry clothing available at the finish of your race, please use the official gear check bag which you will receive when picking up your race packet. It is the ONLY BAG you will be allowed to bring into the secure Start Area in Monmouth Park and the ONLY BAG you will be allowed to carry inside the secure Finish Area. Take advantage of this free service to stay warm and comfortable after your race!

7. Race Day Security Information for Athletes, Spectators, Press, Volunteers and Race Staff: Click here to read about the special race day security requirements at both the Start Area and the Finish Area. If everyone complies with the security requirements, these two areas will be simple to get to and fun places to be on race day for everyone. These safety procedures are intended to allow everyone to feel the positive energy and excitement of race day, in as safe an environment as possible.  Please note: There will be no exceptions to these security requirements on race day! It is your responsibility to understand them and to comply fully. Please be sure that any race day spectators/supporters read and understand the security requirement which apply to them as well.

8. Optional Packet Pick-up Service: If you aren’t able to pick up your race packet during our normal Expo hours on Friday or Saturday, and can’t find a proxy to pick it up for you for free, we offer a Race Day Packet Pick-Up Service. This service is limited to the first 500 who register prior to the cut-off date, and costs $25. Click here if you wish to register for this special service. On race day plan to arrive early to give yourself plenty of time to pick up your packet, pin your bib on your shirt, check clothing at our Gear Check for the finish line, warm up, etc.

9. VIP Program: All Sunday race athletes have the option to additionally purchase a special race package in order to enjoy the ultimate race experience! Our VIP Program includes: special Expo and Start Area parking, access to the VIP facilities in the Start Area and Finish Area, special packet pick-up lines during our Expo, etc.

10. Tide Team: Athletes who have raced with us during five or more consecutive years starting on or before 2010 automatically become Tide Team Members. The 2015 Tide Team Member list is available on our website. If you don’t see your name on the 2015 list, and you believe that it should be, please send an email to info@njmarathon.org with your five (or more) consecutive years listed.  We’ll gladly add you to the Team if you qualify. Click here to check out what you’ll earn by becoming a member.

 

The information above is provided as suggestions which will reduce pre-race and post-race stress on Sunday, April 26th. Please take the time to review the suggestions in these weekly updates and plan accordingly.

As always, the most effective way to manage stress during your race is to develop and follow well thought out training and racing plans, and adjust your plans as needed on race day.

 

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

2014 Race Director Update #2

NN NJM logo - XXSmall

18th Annual Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon, April 25-27

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

Race Director Update #2 – 9 weeks until Race Weekend

Thank you for registering for The 18th Annual Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon Weekend. In an effort to make your participation more enjoyable here is the second in the series of brief weekly messages. Copies of these messages will also be available on our: Website and Blog.

Smooth Sailing on Race DaySummary from Race Director Update #1:

  • Getting to the Start: Carpool and be in the parking lots about 75-120 minutes early, or take the Special NJ Marathon Race Day Train. Click here to register.
  • Post-Race – Getting to your vehicle: Take a regularly scheduled NJ Transit train (doesn’t stop at Monmouth park), walk to one of the parking lots near the Finish Area, or take one of our free buses back to Monmouth Park.
  • Pre-paid parking at Monmouth Park: We strongly suggest this option. Click here to register.
  • Pre-paid parking near the Finish Area: Guaranteed Parking for spectators at Seven President’s Oceanfront Park in Long Branch for $15. Click here to purchase a ticket.
  • Race Day Gear Check: Take advantage of this free service with dry, warm clothing after your race!
  • Race Packet Pick-up: Free at the Expo, paid service on race day morning. Click here to register.
  • Race Day Security Information for Athletes, Spectators, Press, Volunteers and Race Staff: Click here for special race day security requirements.

Expo Parking: Parking on both days of the New Jersey Marathon Health and Fitness Expo is free and open to the public (Fri 1pm-7pm, Sat 10am-6pm). This parking will be inside the gates of Monmouth Park, in the Grandstand lots adjacent to the Start Line of the Sunday races.

Race Day Shuttle Busing: On Sunday the 27th we will provide free shuttle buses from: Monmouth Park Start Area to a location along the race course at about mile 9.5 (which is also about 4 block from the Finish Area and from Pier Village starting at 7 am; Monmouth Park to the Relay Transition Area (loading from 6:45 am to 7 am); and from the Finish Area back to Monmouth Park from approximately 9:15 am to 3:30 pm.

Our New ROCstar Program: We were pleased to discover that over 500 people have raced with us in a combination of our full and half marathons, for four or more consecutive years! In addition, we have heard that there are athletes who have race with us for up to 17 years in a row! We want to let each of you know how please we are that you have regularly included us on your spring running calendar. To each of you we offer a sincere Thank You!

We have created the ROCstar program to track your accomplishment and to show you some love as you continue to run on with us each year. Click here for a link to the ROCstar Program details.

ShapingNJ 5K: In our continued effort to produce a weekend of health and fitness which is open to a wide array of abilities and interests, we have added the ShapingNJ 5K this year. The race will be held on Saturday, April 26th on a USATF certified course and will be a timed race starting this year. It will start and end at the Finish Line of the Sunday races. It will start at 8:30 am on the Long Branch Oceanfront Promenade, north of Pier Village and the Ocean Place Resort.

Family Festival & Kids Races: Barnabas Health has partnered with us again this year to sponsor a Family Festival and Kids Races and we are very excited to be working with them to offer this special family focused part of our race weekend. Click here for a link to our website and the details of this fun Saturday morning event, on the 26th. The Barnabas Health Family Festival and Kids Races begin at 9:30 am on the Great Lawn in Long Branch, which is north of Pier Village and the Ocean Place Resort.

Make it a Shore Weekend: There’s lots to do over the three days of the Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon weekend and groups and families are already making plans to enjoy the Shore with us in late April. In fact, several of the hotels on our Lodging page are already full and people are currently being added to the wait list for the most popular hotels/inns, etc. In addition to the ShapingNJ 5K and Barnabas Health Family Festival and Kids Races on Saturday, there is much to do at Monmouth Park on both Friday and Saturday during our Health & Fitness Expo. In addition to picking up your official race packet (bib #, technical event shirt and Sunday gear drop bag), there will be exercise classes and a very helpful, informative, speaker series. More info will be available to plan your day(s) at the Expo soon.

Course Update: The Long Branch Half Marathon and Half Marathon Relay course has not changed from the certified 2013 course, therefore it retains its certification for 2014. Please note: the boardwalk along the oceanfront in Long Branch, will NOT be repaired in time for this year’s race, however it is not an official part of the course, even though it was used by some in prior to 2013.

Both our Proposed Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon course and ShapingNJ 5K course have been sent to the USATF for certification. The New Jersey Marathon Course changes in 2014 are in the two southernmost municipalities (Asbury Park and Ocean Grove). In Asbury Park we are pleased to announce that we expect to be back on the boardwalk this year, however Ocean Grove has not finished repairs to their boardwalk, etc. and we will be using a bridge to enter Ocean Grove, but not to leave it.

I hope that this information will help to take most of the pre-race and post-race stress out of your day.

Best wishes during your training and on race day!

Joe

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

2014 Race Director Update #1

NN NJM logo - XXSmall

18th Annual Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon, April 25-27

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

Race Director Update #1 – 10 weeks until Race Weekend

Thank you for registering for The 18th Annual Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon weekend which includes the 2014 RRCA New Jersey State Championship races in both the Marathon and Half Marathon distances. In an effort to help make your participation more enjoyable throughout the entire race weekend, this is the first 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.

Smooth Sailing on Race Day:
This section contains important information to help race day go as smoothly as possible for you.

1. Getting to the Start: We are working hard to improve the experience of getting to the Start Line on race day morning, and look forward to your cooperation in helping to reduce traffic delays.

Throughout the fall we looked for ways to recover from the loss of parking lots as a result of increased security put in place after the bombings in Boston last year. We have been working with the security forces to make sure our traffic and parking plans mesh well with their plans. We have added additional parking lots to replace ones which are no longer available to us and we have added additional parking staff to guide you into parking spaces faster.

a. Here are the ways in which you can help make access to the Start Line better:
• If arriving in a private vehicle there are two important things which you can do to make your commute easier on Race Day Morning:
a. Carpool, and
b. Plan on being in the parking lots around Monmouth Park about 75-120 minutes prior to the start of your race.

• Take the Special NJ Marathon Race Day Train which will arrive at Monmouth Park Station at 6:05 am. Click here to register for our special race day train.

Half Marathon and Relay Athletes and Half Marathon Start Line spectators: If you get off at Exits 105 or 109 of the Garden State Parkway after 6:00 am you will likely miss the start of your race!!! Plan ahead. That means that you should plan to be in the parking lots prior to 5:45 am for the Half Marathon and Half Relay.

Marathoners and Marathon Start Line spectators: Plan on being in the parking lots between 6:00 am 7:00 am on race day morning. Please note: Due to the start of the Half Marathon and Relay at 6:45 am, some roads into the parking lots will be closed starting about 6:20 am on race day. With more limited access to parking lots after that time, please plan for extra time to get into the open parking lots.

2. Post-Race: When leaving the Finish Area after your race there are several post-race transportation choices to consider.
a. Walk to Long Branch Station and take a regularly scheduled NJ Transit train home. Please note: These trains DO NOT STOP at Monmouth Park. If parked there this is not an option for you.
b. Walk to your vehicle which is parked in one of the parking lots around the Finish Area.
c. Walk to our Finish Area bus depot (in front of the Ocean Place Resort) for a free bus ride back to Monmouth Park and your vehicle (see below). Please note: Due to road closures from the race, these buses cannot begin the return trip to Monmouth Park until about 9:15 am. Starting at about 9:00 am buses will begin boarding by starting corral order until any backlog has been reduced. We invite you to take advantage of the Finish Line Festival (food, music, raffles, awards ceremonies, cheering for other athletes, etc.). If it’s cool on race day you those warm close you check with us will be waiting for you in the finish area (see below).

Pre-paid parking at Monmouth Park: By registering and paying the $5 per car parking fee prior to race day, exiting the parking lots will be much faster this year. We strongly suggest that you take advantage of this option. Click here to register for Start Area Parking. Tickets will be given out with race bibs during Packet Pick-up at the expo.

Pre-paid parking near the Finish Area: We offer Guaranteed Finish Area Parking at Seven President’s Oceanfront Park in Long Branch for $15. Click here to register for Guaranteed Finish Area Parking. Please note: There is no shuttle transportation from this parking lot to the Start Area.

Gear Check: If you would like to have warm/dry clothing available at the finish of your race, please use the official gear check bag which you will receive when picking up your race packet. It is the ONLY BAG you will be allowed to bring into the secure Start Area in Monmouth Park and the ONLY BAG you will be allowed to carry inside the secure Finish Area. Take advantage of this free service to stay warm and comfortable after your race!

3. Race Day Security Information for Athletes, Spectators, Press, Volunteers and Race Staff: Click here to read about the special race day security requirements at both the Start Area and the Finish Area. If everyone complies with the security requirements, these two areas will be simple to get to and fun places to be on race day for everyone. These safety procedures are intended to allow everyone to feel the positive energy and excitement of race day, in as safe an environment as possible. Please note: There will be no exceptions to these security requirements on race day! It is your responsibility to understand them and to comply fully. Please be sure that any race day supporters read and understand the security requirement which apply to them as well.

Other things to consider:

• Our VIP Program includes special Start Area parking and access to our VIP Tents at both the Start and Finish Areas, in addition to special features during your visit to our Expo.

Race Packet Pick-up: If you aren’t able to pick up your race packet during our normal Expo hours on Friday or Saturday, and can’t find a proxy to pick it up for you for free, we offer a Race Day Packet Pick-Up Service. This service is limited to the first 500 who pre-register for it and costs $25. Click here if you wish to register for this special service. Plan to arrive early to give yourself plenty of time to get you packet, pin you bib on your shirt, check clothing for the finish line, etc.

This information is designed to give you suggestions that will reduce pre-race and post-race stress, over the entire race weekend. Please take the time to review the suggestions in these weekly updates and plan accordingly.

As always, the most effective way to manage stress during your race is to develop and follow well thought out training and racing plans, and adjust your plans as needed on race day.

Best wishes during your training and on race day!

Joe

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

2013 Race Director Update #8 – April 14 (3 weeks until The New Jersey Marathon Weekend)

Where does the Race Start? Monmouth Park, in Oceanport, NJ

Bib # and corral assignments: Prior to the opening of the Novo Nordisk Health & Fitness Expo, we will be sending every registered participant an important document; the “2013 New Jersey Marathon, Long Branch Half Marathon & Half Marathon Relay Confirmation Form”, via the email address entered during registration

That document will contain vital registration information, including your bib #, starting corral assignment, and the event waiver.  The first emails are scheduled to be sent on April 16th to everyone registered prior to April 11th.  The final batch of emails will be sent a few days after the close of on-line registration to everyone registered after April 10th.

Bringing the verified and signed Confirmation Form with you to the Expo will speed up the race packet pick-up process.  Please note: Blank forms will be available at the Expo, along with computers to look up your bib #, etc. if needed.

Race Packet Pick-up Info: Please review the web page Packet Pick-up Information prior to arriving at the Expo, to ensure that you have everything that you need. This will make your experience during Race Packet Pick-up as easy as possible.  If you are unable to pick up your race packet during the Expo hours, you may send a proxy to pick it up for you. If you cannot find someone to be your proxy, you can hire someone to act as your proxy. Please see the “Special Proxy Packet Pick-up Service” information below for that information.

Special Proxy Packet Pick-Up Service: For those participants not arriving until Sunday morning.

We will assemble a group of people who will pick up your race packet at the Expo and have it ready for you on Sunday morning – at a location near the start area. The details are below:

Important –

  • Advanced reservations are required.
  • The registration application for the proxy packet pick-up service can be found here
  • You must sign up for this reservation-only service which will close prior to the opening of the Expo on May 3rd.
  • Any questions regarding this service should be directed to Info@NJMarathon.org.

Starting Corral Assignments: Here are the times which have been assigned to the starting corrals:

FULL

NJM Corrals->

A

B

C

D

Beginning Time->

2:15:00

3:03:00

3:50:00

4:30:00

End Time->

3:02:59

3:49:59

4:29:59

6:30:00

HALF & RELAY

LBH Corrals->

A

B

C

D

E

Beginning Time->

1:05:00

1:30:02

2:00:00

2:15:00

2:45:00

End Time->

1:30:01

1:59:59

2:14:59

2:44:59

3:15:00

 Race Day Weather: The weather varies from year to year on race day. When planning for your race, please remember to have a plan for: cold, rain, wind, sun, heat, humidity, etc. You should understand how to deal with each of these conditions during your race, and adjust your race strategy (goal) accordingly. For example, it can be dangerous to try to PR if we change the warning signs to anything other than green (please refer to Race Director Update # 2 for a description of the warning system). An archive of all previous RD Updates is available from the home page of our website. Here’s a direct link to the archive.

Parking at the Novo Nordisk Health & Fitness Expo: Parking during the Expo, on May 4th and 5th, will be inside the Grandstand gates in Monmouth Park.  Watch for signs as you drive along Oceanport Ave. Important – Prior to heading to the Health & Fitness Expo to pick up your race packet (or sending your Proxy), Please Review” Packet Pick-Up Instructions, and don’t forget to also check out the free speakers, classes, etc.

Parking on Race Day: Parking on race day will occur in many lots inside the park gates and also in lots surrounding the park. The lots will open at 4:30 am on May 5th. Signboards and police officers will direct you to the best available entrance.  Please pay attention to the signs and directions in order to speed up the process.  Our parking staff will be in the lots directing you exactly where to park. Please park as instructed, so that we can park everyone as quickly as possible.  Please note: If you wish to be dropped off prior to the start, please watch for the drop-off area signs and follow police instructions. Important cars in the drop-off area may NOT park. DO NOT DROP ANYONE OFF OUTSIDE THE DROP OFF AREA, AS THAT WILL SLOW DOWN PARKING FOR OTHERS.

Traffic on Race Day: Traffic on race day morning has been very heavy each of the past several years.  This is especially the case about an hour prior to race start time, as a majority of people seem to arrive at about that same time. In order to take traffic stress out of race day morning, plan on carpooling, arriving early or take the Special New Jersey Marathon Race Day Train, and enjoy a more relaxing race day experience!  Monmouth Park has places to top off your fuel (bananas, bagels, peanut butter, etc.) and hydration (water, coffee, tea, etc.), warm up, stretch, get out of the crowds and the weather, and/or unhydrate, etc. The thoroughbreds will likely be training early in the morning. Watching them can be a great way to relax prior to your race, which certainly beats sitting in traffic!

Everyone driving east on Rt. 36 toward Monmouth Park on race day morning will be directed to turn left onto either County Road 537, Oceanport Ave. or Victor Ave. Please pay attention to the police directions as they implement the plan.

Important – All participants must complete the Emergency Information on the back for their bibs in ball-point pen.

We Want to Hear Why You Run: Email us your stories! If selected you may be featured on our Facebook page, in newsletters, or promotional materials. We’ve received a number of good ones, and we know that there are more of you out there. Inspire us and others, please!

Helping Us Help Others: Move for Hunger will be conducting a food drive during the Novo Nordisk Health & Fitness Expo. Please remember, it’s “cans in hands” when heading to the Expo.  (Collection bins will also be available at the finish on race day.) Please help us to end hunger right here in The Garden State!!!

We are also attempting to change the lives of families in African villages by donating used athletic shoes to the MORE Foundation during the Expo. It takes the proceeds from 600 pairs to sustain a family for a year, and we’d like to adopt several families this year! Thank you for joining with us in this very worth-while effort!  Together in 2012, we provided the Agozi Moses Family with the MORE Foundation benefits. Thank you!

Today! Thank you to everyone who joined us today for their training run.  We enjoyed hosting you three weeks before race day, and were pleased to hear of, and read about, the positive experiences you had on the race courses today.  I’m sure that we all hope that was a preview of race day weather this morning!

Best wishes during your training and on race day,

Joe Gigas, Executive Race Director