After days of public backlash and outrage, the 2012 New York City Marathon has officially been canceled, announced by Mayor Michael Bloomberg's office Friday evening, calling the race a "source of controversy and division."
"We would not want a cloud to hang over the race or its participants, so we have decided to cancel it."
Mayor Bloomberg and New York Road Runners President and CEO Mary Wittenberg issued the following joint statement:
"The Marathon has been an integral part of New York City's life for 40 years and is an event tens of thousands of New Yorkers participate in and millions more watch. While holding the race would not require diverting resources from the recovery effort, it is clear that it has become the source of controversy and division. The marathon has always brought our city together and inspired us with stories of courage and determination. We would not want a cloud to hang over the race or its participants, and so we have decided to cancel it. We cannot allow a controversy over an athletic event -- even one as meaningful as this -- to distract attention away from all the critically important work that is being done to recover from the storm and get our city back on track. The New York Road Runners will have additional information in the days ahead for participants."
There has been no word yet as to when the marathon might be rescheduled, if at all. Nor has there been any communication as of yet in regards to entry fees, deferments for 2013's race or compensation, if any, for international runners who traveled to New York.
The marathon had been held every year since 1970.