The Great New York 100 Mile/100KM Running Exposition is an informal, small, low-key event that nevertheless promises to be an unforgettable running experience. It is an urban adventure, a running tour of New York City, beginning and ending in Times Square.
The start is Saturday, June 19, 2021 at 5:00 a.m. The start is at the Times Square pedestrian plaza at Broadway and 47th St., next to the TKTS booth, and the finish is at the Times Square pedestrian plaza on Broadway between 42nd and 43rd St.
WHAT'S WITH THE NAME? First of all, if it’s in New York, it has to be great! And the name takes its cue from the tradition of P.T. Barnum, where everything is great. It’s an exposition because it will expose you to parts of the city you’ve probably never been to before, and will show you what a great city this is to run in.
CUTOFF: The cutoff time for finishing the race is 30 hours (11:00 a.m. Sunday). The cutoff for 100 KM to continue on is 16 hours (9:00 p.m. - strictly enforced), the cutoff for the 100K finish is 18 hours (11:00 p.m.).
COURSE: There are course changes for 2021 in northern Manhattan and the Bronx, from miles 10-31. If you have run the race or training runs before, please be aware of the changes. The course runs north through Manhattan, over the Henry Hudson Bridge into the Bronx, through trails, parks, greenways and waterside paths, over the Triborough Bridge into Queens, through the Queens park corridor, including Flushing Meadows Park/Unisphere, then to Rockaway Beach, Coney Island, and the Brooklyn Bridge back to Manhattan. The course will be marked but runners must be alert and attentive to markings and directions to avoid a wrong turn. The terrain is generally flat to gently rolling, with the biggest hills coming in the first 10 miles up through Inwood Hill Park, and the larger bridges that are crossed. There is about a mile and a half of trails in Riverdale Park, about three miles of trails in Van Cortlandt Park, a short crushed gravel section in the South Bronx, and a short trail section in Alley Pond Park, otherwise the course is all paved. There are some sections in parks and on greenways where you can run on the grass alongside the pavement, which is allowed (but not on people’s lawns). I’ve tried to minimize running on streets with traffic as much as possible, but NOTE that much of the final 10 miles is run on streets where there may be heavy vehicular and/or pedestrian traffic, which is part of the “urban adventure” aspect of the race, so prepare to take extra care in traffic when you’re exhausted near the end.
AID STATIONS: There will be aid stations approximately every 5 miles along the course. Some will be minimal, providing water and sports drink, others will provide some simple food items (fruit, chips/pretzels, cookies) and ice during the day, some will have more substantial food items. Our volunteers have been outstanding in caring for the runners. The aid stations will still not provide all of your nutritional needs during the race. You should still carry your own food, have it crewed for you, or buy it in stores, delis or restaurants you pass along the way. You will also pass by many park drinking fountains if you need extra water. This is part of the urban adventure and fun of an event like this. Keep in mind that many stores may close at night. The aid stations will also not have any extra amenities like cots or anyplace to nap at night. Aid station staff will check you in, make sure you’re ok, help you with directions if needed and give you encouragement and support. You will still have to be somewhat self-reliant. Please only enter this race if you are prepared for that.
100KM RUN: The 100 km run will start at the same time and same place as the 100 mile run. The finish will be in Forest Park in Queens, near the entrance at Myrtle Ave. and Park Lane South. Runners entered in the 100 mile run may stop at 100 km if they don’t feel they are able to finish 100 miles, and they will receive a 100 km finish and award. Runners entered in the 100 km run may not continue in the 100 mile run. Anyone finishing at the 100 km point will be responsible for their own transportation home or to Times Square. The 100 km finish is approximately six blocks from the 111 St. station on the J subway line.
BAGS: Runners entered in the 100 mile run may have one bag at the finish and one drop bag at an aid station, at 100 km, mile 71, 75 or 80, for the primary purpose of warmer clothes at night, a change of clothes, a headlamp or other safety gear, or additional food items. Please do not use large bags for drop bags, and please let the race director know in advance if you would like to leave a larger bag (like a suitcase) at the finish. Runners entered in the 100 km run may have a bag delivered to the Forest Park finish, but no additional drop bags. All drop bags will be delivered to the Times Square finish line as soon as possible after the aid station closure. Any bags unclaimed at the end of the race will be taken home by the race director and the runner will have to make arrangements to pick it up later.
PACERS: The race is held on public paths and streets which will be fully open to the public. However, we are not allowing pacers before the Astoria aid station (mile 37) and in fact recommend no pacers before the Alley Pond Park aid station (mile 51). After that runners may have no more than one pacer at a given time. The exception is for runners age 60 and over who may have a pacer from the start. Pacing rules will be strictly enforced, and runners who violate the rule will be subject to disqualification. Runners may also have friends finish the last few blocks with them if they wish. Bicycle pacers are allowed, but must obey all city and state bicycle laws and safety regulations. Keep in mind bicycles are not allowed on city sidewalks, on the Coney Island boardwalk before 5 a.m., and the marked course along 4th Ave. in Brooklyn is on the left-hand sidewalk (against traffic). Pacers (and crew) can meet you at any point on the course, not only at aid stations. Pacers are very strongly recommended at night, or after the 70 mile point, especially for first-time 100-mile runners. This is for runner security, to prevent getting lost, and for safety in case a runner becomes ill or disoriented. Two or more registered runners may run the entire race together. Pacers will not be an absolute requirement, but are very very strongly recommended, as previous runners will attest. Sunset is approximately 8:30 p.m. Runners will have to arrange for their own pacers.
COVID-19: We expect to be able to hold the race in 2021 as planned. However, we may have to make modifications due to Covid-19. These modifications may include staggered starts, mask requirements, modified aid station procedures, finish line/hotel procedures, or other concerns. We will also keep an eye on international or domestic travel restrictions, and make adjustments if needed. Please be flexible and understanding, and above all, be safe.
MANDATORY: All registered runners must carry the following items with them during the run.
1. Cell phone*
2. Direction sheet, to be provided
3. Metrocard with at least one subway/bus fare on it (but not a single-fare cardboard card, which is good for only two hours from purchase)**
4. Cash, at least $25 recommended, for additional food and drink purchases (some stores may not take credit cards)
5. At least one water bottle or hydration pack, minimum 20 oz.
*If you don't have a cell phone, please let us know
**Runners, particularly those from out of town, who wish to have a Metrocard provided to them, please send me a request by email at least one week prior to race day.
1. Music listening devices are prohibited at night, for registered runners and for pacers, and are very strongly discouraged at any point during the run. This is a genuine safety issue. You will be running on streets that are open to traffic and you must always be fully aware of your surroundings. It can also distract you from following course markings. Furthermore, although you will not be running through any particularly dangerous neighborhoods at night, music listening devices are a target for thieves. Of course you may carry smart phones for a phone, but it should stay stowed away unless needed. Similarly, we strongly recommend against using smart phones for non-essential use at night (i.e., social media updates).
2. Littering. This includes banana peels and orange rinds. You will pass by trash cans everywhere along the route – use them.
3. Stopping traffic to cross against the light. This applies to runners and to pacers or crew. You must wait until the light turns or until the street is safely clear.
NEW FOR 2021:
1. Runners MUST follow the marked course at all times! I realize that our marking is not perfect, people miss turns, but all efforts must be made to say on the marked course, including all streets and park pathways. At no time is it acceptable to intentionally choose another route, whether or not it might appear to shorten the distance. This will result in disqualification. On many of the street sections, it may be possible to run on either side of the street, even if only one particular side is marked. This is acceptable, but keep in mind that those not familiar with the course might miss a turn if running on the unmarked side.
2. Runners may go off-course to visit a store, a bathroom, or even their home if they wish. But they must leave and return to the point they left the course by foot, under their own power.
3. No runner may get into a moving vehicle at any time during the race. If a runner goes off-course, whether intentionally (see #2 above) or unintentionally, they must return to the point they left the course by foot under their own power. That means no Uber, no bicycle, no scooter, no helicopter, no hovercraft. Runners may sit in a crew person's car only if it remains parked.
DROPS: I genuinely expect all runners to complete the entire 100 miles/km within the allotted time frame. But if you must drop, you must notify race officials, volunteers, or myself immediately. It is preferable to drop at an aid station and tell the volunteers there, but I realize that at some points you pass by subway stations or other locations where it might be better for you to drop. In such a case, you must call me or send me a text – BEFORE you get on the train or bus or otherwise leave the course. Unless injured or seriously ill, you will be responsible for getting yourself to the finish line or home or wherever you need to go.
OTHER WORDS: Always remember, safety first! This is not meant to be a highly-competitive event. Take the time to wait at stop lights, and always be careful at crossings. You are doing something amazing by running 100 miles, but drivers don’t know this. Also, respect the neighborhoods that you run through, be courteous to pedestrians, bike riders, and drivers. You are ambassadors and representatives for your sport, like it or not. But finally, relax and have fun, and enjoy the city and your run!
CONTACT: Phil McCarthy, Race Director;