Your Silly Road Race 6:15.11

June 16th, 2011 in Articles by 0 Comments

The Faster Than Forty editorial team scours the nation for fun or funny road races we think you will enjoy. Rider University’s Paige McAtee presents this installment.

If the Marcum Workplace Challenge sounds like a knock-off of the nationally renowned Corporate Challenge, well it is… But just because it’s a replica doesn’t mean it isn’t fun. Although for 20 years the race operated as an official JP Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge event, for the past 6 years, the Marcum has stood on its own.

“There’s not much of a difference,” said race director Mindy Davidson. “It’s still an event for employees, family and friends of those who work for the companies.”

Now that the event has gone independent, there is a live band, different sponsors, and special awards for the participants. Additionally, local “American Idol” contestant Robbie Rosen will be singing the National Anthem right before the start of this year’s race.

Why else should you run this silly road race?

“The events that go on after the race are definitely what make this road race worth running,” said Davidson.

Companies can reserve spaces where participants can hang out after the race and have a barbecue and celebrate. Participants will leave the event feeling like it’s Christmas day because of the gifts and goodie-bags. The favors include coupons from the participating companies, food, a participants’ shirt, and much more.

The Marcum Workplace Challenge is not a regular road race; the participating companies compete against each other in a “friendly.” The race is self-timed. There are no chips, and all runners are responsible for knowing their finishing times. (The team captain then scores the times on a score card and hands it in.) The race is 3.5 miles, mostly flat and run on roads.

Davidson explains that she is flexible with how many people are required to be on a team. Some companies may only have one participant while other companies (such as P.C. Richard and Son) will have more than 500.

There are three types of teams: a men’s team, a women’s team, and a co-ed team. On a single-sex team, the top three finishers score. On a co-ed team the top two men and top two women score. Trophies are awarded to the winning teams and individuals. The five fastest men and the five fastest women receive individual prizes. The top 10 teams in each category (male, female, and co-ed) receive awards as well.

Other awards include the John E. McGorry Jr. Spirit of the Race award and the male and female “Top Dog.” In order to be a “Top Dog,” the runner must be the most senior executive at his or her company. Additional team awards go to top male, female and co-ed teams from law firms (The Legal Challenge) and banks (The Bank Challenge). This year will feature a “First Responder’s Challenge” for fire fighters, police, EMTs, SWAT, Sherriff and K-9 Units.

Each team creates  and wears their own team shirt. Awards will be given out to the shirt with the best graphic design, the best event-related slogan, best use of the Marcum Workplace Challenge Logo, and the most colorful.

So, yeah, there are a lot of awards!

The 2011 Marcum Workplace Challenge takes place at Jones Beach State Park on Long Island, New York on Tuesday July 26th at 7 p.m. The entry fee is $21 per person before July 1st. July 1st through July 25th, the entry fee is $23 per person, and day-of race registration is $25. For more information about registering for the race, go to:

The race starts and ends in the parking lot of the Jones Beach Nikon Theater. On race-day, the line to get into Jones Beach is often very long with a lot of traffic. It is recommended to come early as possible. “Over 200 companies sign up for this race each year,” said Davidson.

The race benefits go to three charities: the Children’s Medical Fund of New York, Long Island Children’s Museum, and Long Island Cares- The Harry Chapin Food Bank.

Have a suggestion for the “Your Silly Road Race” column? Drop us a note here.

Paige McAtee is a sophomore journalism major at Rider University. She competes in cross country and distance events.


Author: FasterThanForty

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