8 Nov

Partridge Disappointed At New York Cancellation

Susan Partridge

GB international Susan Partridge was among those affected by the cancellation of last weekend's New York marathon. Around 47,000 runners were left disappointed by the annual event being abandoned in the wake of the widespread damage caused by superstorm Sandy.

Scottish runner Partridge, who has competed at World and European championships, spoke to scottishrunningguide.com to give a perspective of the elite athlete on the cancellation of the iconic event.

The Halifax-based 32 year old said that the public mood towards the iconic event shifted rapidly from when she first arrived in the city earlier on the Friday: "The atmosphere was positive when we first arrived."

"The marathon would be a show of strength against adversity. The marathon after 9/11 was so uplifting. But they were working on different time scale this time and the atmosphere started to change. The media chose to go on a more antagonistic line. I think the marathon got unfairly scapegoated. People were angry about bottles of water and generators available for the marathon when some people in the city were short on water and power.

"There were two generators at the finish that would power 400 homes and I can see why that would cause outrage. But a Mayor's aide said they were not the right type of generators anyway. It was sad to see the marathon's reputation getting tarnished. People were passionate and frenzied and there were concerns about the runners' safety.

"I was surprised at the animosity. It should be a symbol of hope and resilience, but it became a symbol of conflict and division."

Grief for those lost to the disaster and the destruction of some people's homes meant feelings were running high and the reasons for New York marathon taking place were largely shouted down by the understandably more passionate voices of those badly affected by Hurricane Sandy.

"You have to have perspective and some people lost loved ones and some were losing their homes," she said.

"The disappointment of not running the marathon was not comparable to what some people were going through. But no-one ever suggested it was."

For the 32 year old from Oban it meant she will now have to postpone her next marathon until possibly next April in London.

She said: "I think Yokohama in Japan was an option. But so much of racing the marathon is building up for that one day. It's not like other races where you can run again and again. I don't think I could start training again and taper again. I'll probably do London again anyway."

As for the winter, Partridge will race cross country and some 10k races ahead of 2013 where she will attempt to gain the marathon qualifying standard for the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games.