After 5 days, the Chicago Marathon has now officially spoken to the runners.
Remember a couple of days ago, I mentioned that a quick response to a bad situation from a public official should express "concern over the incident, a committment to finding out exactly what happened, and a determination to correct any problem that's uncovered"? Well, folks, you read Mr. Pinkowski's statement and tell me if you think it does any of these things:
For 17 years I have been honored to serve as Executive Race Director of The LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon, a race steeped in a 30-year tradition of providing the ultimate marathon experience for runners.
The record high temperatures and humidity at Sunday’s race made for a challenging day for marathoners. The conditions on Sunday presented me with the single most difficult decision I have ever made as race director. While that was a frustration to many, I stand behind the decision to end the race early– it was a necessary safety measure. However, I also recognize that because of the conditions and my decision, many of our runners did not have the experience they trained for and expected.
As an organization dedicated to providing the very best experience in the industry, the results have left us disappointed as well. Our team has spent the last several days reviewing the details and we are listening to runners, staff and volunteers. Rest assured that we take the day’s events - and your comments - seriously.
We are reviewing all details and feedback as we plan to continue the tradition of our race in 2008 and beyond. Offering the best experience possible to runners always has been our priority and it remains a commitment of the highest importance.
My personal gratitude goes to each of you, as well as to staff and volunteers, for participating in the race this year. I share in your disappointment, if you did not have the experience you expected.
I certainly hope to be able to greet you at our finish line in the years ahead, in the grand fashion that has characterized The LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon for so many years.
Executive Race Director
Once again, no mention of aid stations, difficulty finding hydration, or lack of cooling stations until late in the race. Nothing. At least he doesn't come right out and call me an overly-thirsty, whiny loser.
Maybe he saw my apology on Thursday.