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Canceled Marathon Leaves Runners and Residents in a Huff

By James Fanelli | November 3, 2012 3:33pm

NEW YORK CITY — A day after the New York City Marathon was scrubbed, runners griped about the short notice they received, while residents complained about the increase in sneaker traffic on their streets.

Race organizers estimated 40,000 of the race's 47,500 runners were already in the city. As many participants cooled their heels Saturday, they lamented that months of training went down the drain and criticized the city for not canceling the race sooner.

"We flew all the way from Indonesia — like 4,000 miles — and then they canceled two days before the race," said PartiViga Nasutia, who spent some $5,000 to run her first marathon at the age of 34.

"Yes, they should have canceled it," she added. "I think that's a good thing. But they should have told us Sunday, Monday, or even Tuesday."

Nasutia's trip spans 10 days and, like a number of runners interviewed Saturday, she said she planned on lacing up and jogging around the city despite the race being canceled.

But shell-shocked New Yorkers, still in recovery mode, groused that runners were clogging streets.

West Village resident Adam Mimran said some of them nearly trampled him as he walked along Central Park on Saturday morning.

"When you see a row of runners, and you can't get out of the way, you kind of have to do that little squirrel dodge. It's like [the game] 'Frogger,'" he said.

Mimran, 27, has a retort for careless joggers — but so far they have trotted away before he could blurt it out.

"It's a sidewalk, not a side run," he said.

Some race participants planned to make the best of a bad situation by doing charity runs on Sunday.

In lieu of running her first marathon, Lee Uehara says she and other runners will strap on backpacks full of food, flashlights and gift cards and head to Staten Island in the morning, racing to different recovery sites to hand out the supplies to residents in need.

"I was looking for ways to help," she said. "I'm so excited that I could do something that would involve running but let Staten Island residents know that we as runners care about their situation."