Boston 2012–the numbers tell the story

2009 boston marathon finish line Boston 2012  the numbers tell the story

Eyes on the prize

After all the buzz on Boston’s new qualifying system, and after everyone who qualified had a chance to apply, the dust has settled and the field for the 2012 race is set. What’s it look like? Much like recent years, according to organizers.

Care to crunch some numbers? A  breakdown of who got in and who didn’t:

  • 1,851 runners with 30 minutes or better on their qualifying times, including 26 men in the 70-74 age group (love this)
  • In just about all age groups, people with 10 to 20 minutes on their qualifying times make up the majority of the field
  • The largest number of entrants in any age group fell into the 18- to 34-yr. old age group with  10 minutes to spare, in both genders
  • Men accounted for 58 percent of the field, much as they have over the past few years
  • Total number of qualifiers is around 20,000, with the other 7,000 going to charity and invited runners
  • Interestingly, many of those with 20-plus minutes over their qualifying times still waited until the second week to register. Organizers attribute that to runners waiting to see if friends/family members with less cushion made it through.

Overall, the organizers say the saw little deviation from the group of qualifiers over recent years, which they say affirms the system they put into place. They also noted a big drop in complaints over last year (I would think!), again pointing to a fair new system.

Speaking from a personal viewpoint, I can say I don’t know of anyone who qualified, by any amount of time under the qualifying standards, who didn’t make it in. But I’m sure those folks are out there and I’m sure they are not loving the new system. Overall though, I take it as an improvement.

What do you think now that you’ve seen the numbers?

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  1. Although I am not thrilled with the increase in qual times, I think the system they have is a good one and will work better than previous years. I think its good they allow people with qual times of 10+ minutes under the time, to go first. Interesting to see the numbers as to who got in and who didn’t.
    J recently posted..A weekend with Joanie – Part 1My Profile

  2. “1,851 runners with 30 minutes or better on their qualifying times, including 26 men in the 70-74 age group (love this)”

    Oh boy! I LOVE this, too!! ROCK on gentlemen!!
    Julie recently posted..Monday Morning Dance PartyMy Profile

  3. I agree, I was surprised I didn’t hear more chatter about the registration being open on FB.

    PS – Thanks for your kind works about Mr. P this am!
    Dash recently posted..Goodbye Mr. PumpkinMy Profile

  4. Interesting you mention this. I haven’t noticed any bloggers writing about going to Boston in 2012. A few mentioned getting a BQ time, but not the flux of posts I saw this time last year with folks writing about applying online to actually run Boston.

    Did no one qualify this time? Did no one try to enter? Or did they try and not get in?
    Holly recently posted..Post-Race Fueling & HydrationMy Profile

  5. Love this. Great run down on the numbers :)

  6. It looks like the system is working but I’m surprised the field wasn’t comprised more of the 30 min. or better field.
    Are you going to run Boston again?
    I think I’ll keep running it as long as I keep qualifying. The 2013 qualification standards will be the real test.
    Joanne recently posted..This Chapter in My Life and Apple Pean-olaMy Profile

  7. Interesting to see the stats! I know a handful of people (including my husband, of course) who qualified by only about a minute and did not make it in. It stings, but I do think the changes they have made are for the better.
    marlene recently posted..Pass the carrots.My Profile

  8. I know a couple of people who qualified but didn’t get in because they just qualified. Sucks but this system seems a lot more fair then the sprint-to-the-webpage-on registration-day system!

    Wonder how many people got rejected?
    Jeff recently posted..10 For Texas Race ReportMy Profile

  9. Numbers make my head spin. :)

  10. I know a couple who qualified but didn’t make it in. I am not sure what to think of the numbers since I have nothing to compare them to.
    Jamoosh recently posted..Be Safe–GiveawayMy Profile

  11. I know a few runners that qualified and did not get in. My heart breaks for them and that, I think, is unfair. However, they needed to implement something after the registration fiasco in 2010. I got in by the skin on my teeth – literally. I ran a 3:43:46 and that was exactly the cut off time for my age and gender. Talk about lucky.

  12. Sounds like the system is working!
    Kovas recently posted..Another Great Weekend in Michigan Wine CountryMy Profile

  13. Thanks for posting these stats. I’d be interested in knowing (not that there’s a way) how many ppl ran their BQ time only by less than 5 minutes, but couldn’t get in due to it filling up before their chance. I wonder how 2013′s registration is gonna go! 5 minutes is a lot of time to cut off!
    just run with it recently posted..Puppy parks and a very hilly runMy Profile

  14. I would agree with several others that I have not hear the amount of Boston talk from the blog front this year. There were a lot of posts about it when the standards changed, but not much since then. I think it sounds like things went better this year, but I am sure the system still seems flawed for those who qualified but will still not be running.
    Laura recently posted..Diary of An Injured RunnerMy Profile

  15. this is so interesting – thank you for pulling all of this together!
    also i have been meaning to tell you (can’t remember if i already did!) – i love love love the new look of your blog!
    jessica recently posted..long run reflectionsMy Profile

  16. I haven’t been bitten by the Boston bug. Possibly because I don’t run marathons very often (this fall is my first in 6 years!), and BQing would really take some doing, but I feel like would be too much of a hassle to get bused to a race to sit around for hours before running. I’m sure being there, on that day, is worth it, and I know it’s the pinnacle of marathoning, but does anyone else feel that way?
    ultrarunnergirl recently posted..Road WearyMy Profile

  17. Interesting! I’d like to know who qualified, applied, and didn’t get accepted. I don’t know why I want to know this, though…perhaps it would give me an idea of how much the standards needed to change by or something.
    Gracie (complicated day) recently posted..Huge discount for RnR New Orleans, today only!My Profile

  18. interesting! have you found any official numbers on those that qualified and did not get in? I think it is fair system…we’ll see how it plays out for me in the next couple years.
    Julie D. recently posted..Three things ThursdayMy Profile

  19. I like the new system (even though it means I may never run in this race!), and I think your numbers attest to its fairness. I didn’t see a lot of complaining this year. I think merit systems are always better than lotteries for this kind of thing.

    The time I have to run won’t change for me next year since I’m now going to be trying for the 40-44 YO standard, which will be the same for 2013 as the 2012 35-39 standard (3:45 or better). At least I have that going for me!
    Terzah recently posted..The Versatile BloggerMy Profile

  20. I think I am in AWE of those who work so hard to qualify and make it – no matter what the cushion! What an accomplishment!
    That Pink Girl recently posted..Pumpkin Patch DaysMy Profile

  21. Yeah, most people I know who qualified made it. I wonder though what percentage of the number of folks who just squeezed in with a BQ made it, vs. how many were rejected. Have a great day – thanks for all of your encouraging comments on my blog – I really appreciate it!
    Jim recently posted..Best Workout EVER!!!My Profile

  22. I don’t think Marlene’s husband made it in, but I don’t know how may minutes/seconds he had to give either. I have a friend who just BQ’d with 2 minutes to spare and I’m not so sure she’s going to make it in 2013 … we’ll see I guess.
    Jill recently posted..Weeks 7 and 8 in the numbersMy Profile

  23. That is very interesting and like a few people wrote there was not so much chatter about getting into the race or not getting into the race as I would have expected.

    That tells me the system is working.
    Jason @ Cook Train Eat Race recently posted..Lessons Learned from Austin 70.3My Profile

  24. Interesting to see the number break downs
    BDD recently posted..Weekly RamblingsMy Profile

  25. I got in with a BQ -2:35 and will be running in 2012. I really didn’t think I’d get in with that time as most people speculated that the race would fill up in week one. I was pleasantly surprised when it did open. However the cut off at BQ -1;14 means that a lot of people didn’t get in, they said around 3,500 if I’m not mistaken and that’s too bad. I know a few people that qualified but didn’t get in (and tried). I do think the changes were necessary and agree 100% with them. Fastest first makes so much sense. I think for 2013, everyone who qualifies, will get in, because of the shortened times, and that’s how it should be.
    Robin Brunet recently posted..Rest is OverMy Profile

  26. i’m with you, everyone i know who qualified got in (except me b/c i didn’t even try!!). seems like it was a positive change from what i can tell.
    Denise recently posted..Nutrition Issue Solved!My Profile

  27. All in all I think the process was very ‘fair’ and went smoothly. I do know several (>5) people who got shut out by mere seconds though. They too, although disappointed, feel the process was fair.
    Something had to be done and I think the BAA did a good job with this.
    Teamarcia recently posted..Weekend Rewind: The Ultimate SacrificeMy Profile

  28. well i’m glad it worked out… it was getting kind of old hearing all the boston debate last year! sure it’s still not fun to know if you’re “going to boston” when you earn the BQ but you still know that you BQ’d.
    lindsay recently posted..bah humbug (christmas photo card giveaway!)My Profile

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