Before the CRCA 2008 racing season begins, I want to thank the racers, marshals, and race staff for making our 2007 Central Park series a safe and successful one. Representatives of both the NYC Parks Department and the Central Park Conservancy have told me they recognize our efforts towards creating a safe racing and training environment, and maintaining respect for all Park users. As I have said before, I believe that safety, consideration, and respect are key to preserving bike racing in the coming years in an ever-more crowded Central Park.

While Parks and CPC seem happy with our organization, the task of squaring away our permits was rather difficult this year. New York Road Runners has encountered similar problems. You can thank our V.P. of Club Racing, David Taylor, for putting in an exceptional effort to get this resolved on almost no notice.

I anticipate that our first few races — and perhaps the entire year — will be under a higher level of oversight and scrutiny. CRCA signs a contract every year with the Parks Department. This contract has a rules-and-regulations rider which outlines the responsibilities of the promoter, the officials and marshals, and the participants. The rules for participants are the same as last year:

Race Participants:

  • Are not allowed to ride bikes on pathways.
  • Should respect other parks users at all times.
  • Should not ride in the wrong direction on the drive after 6:00 a.m.
  • Should not place bikes on trees or exposed tree roots.
  • Should not relieve themselves in the landscape.
  • Should not block the recreation lane during or after the race.
  • Should not place bags on grass.

Get to the race early whether you’re marshaling or racing so we can start on time and not cut laps. If you think you placed, confirm your results at the race, not on Monday. If you crash or are injured during a race, USCF incident report forms are available at the registration table. CRCA does not submit incident reports unless the rider fills one out, or we are made aware of an ambulance having taken riders away.

Here’s to a safe and fun 2008 club racing season. Stay out of the jogger’s lane!

Ken Harris
President, CRCA