The New York City Marathon, the world’s largest marathon and one of the city’s biggest annual spectacles, has been canceled this year as concerns about the spread of the coronavirus continue to dash hopes of holding large-scale events, organizers announced Wednesday.
The race, one of the most prestigious and lucrative events of its kind, would have celebrated its 50th anniversary in November. It is one of the highlights of fall in New York and on the endurance sports calendar, attracting more than 50,000 runners, 10,000 volunteers and roughly one million fans, who line nearly every accessible yard of the 26.2-mile course through the five boroughs.
City officials and New York Road Runners, which owns and organizes the event, decided holding the race would be too risky. Public health experts have said mass events, especially those that bring people together from across the globe, will remain a danger until a treatment or a vaccine for COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, is widely available.
Michael Capiraso, the chief executive of New York Road Runners, said he and other organizers had held out hope that the race could happen. They decided to cancel before having to spend more money to organize it.
“There was hope but that turned to uncertainty, and given what we have seen the past months this was really the only decision,” Capiraso said.
Mariners’ players test positive
Seattle Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto said a few players have tested positive for COVID-19. Dipoto declined to specify the number of players or if they are part of Seattle’s 40-man roster. Dipoto said they have all been asymptomatic. “With the cases popping up, especially in some of the hot spots around the country, we have had a few players test positive,” Dipoto said. “Right now they’re asymptomatic, they feel great, but we are aware that they’re positive.” The Mariners expect players to begin arriving this weekend in Seattle for workouts leading into the start of the season in late July. Some players had been working out at the team’s spring training facility in Peoria, Arizona, but Dipoto did not specify where the players that had the positive tests were located . . . Several unidentified players and staff members of the Toronto Blue Jays have tested positive for the coronavirus, a person familiar with the situation told the The Associated Press. The Blue Jays closed their training facility last Friday in Dunedin, Fla., after a player showed symptoms consistent with the virus. It remains unclear where the Blue Jays plan to hold their training camp and play home games this summer. The Canadian government is open to Major League Baseball playing in Toronto this summer, but the league has not submitted the required plan to health authorities.
Pacers’ G Malcom Brogdon in quarantine
Indiana Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon said he has been quarantined after testing positive for the coronavirus. Team officials made the announcement by posting Brogdon’s statement on Twitter. “I recently tested positive for the COVID virus and am currently in quarantine,” the statement read. “I’m doing well, feeling well and progressing well. I plan to join my teammates in Orlando for the resumption of the NBA season and playoffs.” Indiana began testing players earlier this week and is scheduled to arrive in Orlando in early July to resume full practices. NBA officials have announced they will quarantine teams for 24 hours before practices can begin. The Indianapolis Star reported backup guard Justin Holiday may not play and two-time All-Star Victor Oladipo told ESPN.com on Saturday he intended to ramp up his activities with the team this week before making a decision.
UConn drops four sports
The University of Connecticut decided to eliminate four athletic teams as it deals with an expected budget deficit driven by issues related to the coronavirus pandemic. UConn president Thomas Katsouleas told the school’s Board of Trustees the school will reduce the number of sports it supports from 24 to 20, eliminating its men’s cross country, men’s swimming and diving, men’s tennis and women’s rowing teams. He said eliminating those programs, along with mandating a 15 percent in the operating budget of all sports and cutting some scholarships, should result in a requested savings of $10 million annually, or 25 percent of the school’s subsidy to the Division of Athletics over the next three years. That subsidy was $42 million in 2019 . . . The University of Northern Colorado will discontinue the men’s and women’s tennis programs as part of a cost-saving effort due to budget shortfalls created by the pandemic. The school, located in Greeley, Colo., will now sponsor 17 intercollegiate athletic programs, including nine women’s sports . . . Navy football coach Ken Niumatalolo was optimistic the Midshipmen will not be playing in an empty stadium in the season opener at home against Notre Dame, despite social distancing measures that will be required. The longest continuous intersectional rivalry in the country was moved from Ireland to Annapolis, Md., because of COVID-19 and is tentatively scheduled for Sept. 5. “At this point I feel good about all the plans we have in place,” Niumatalolo said. “Obviously it won’t be a full stadium and it will be a lot different from other games that we’ve ever played at the Naval Academy, but that’s the new norm now.” This will be the first time Notre Dame visits Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in the 94-year history of the rivalry.