The number of runners who signed up on the first day to run the 2018 Air Force Marathon dropped compared to the first registration day in 2017, figures show.
Marathon statistics show 3,337 people signed up Jan. 2 compared to 5,015 on the first day to register in 2016, according to Marathon Director Rob Aguiar.
“In the running industry now, the first day of registration is not what is used to be say 10 years ago when you had less races and when you had to register quickly on that day to make sure you got in,” Aguiar said.
Runners are “more cautious” today than in the past, he said.
“They don’t want to commit right in the beginning if something happens,” he said. “… Folks are waiting, making sure they’re healthy, making sure their schedule permits.”
Air Force Marathon runners compete in 5K and 10K races and half- and full-marathons. The half-marathon led the pack at with 1,065 participants signed up as of Tuesday, Aguiar said. The 10K had 881 runners and the 5K counted 715, thus far.
Organizers created a new “premium” medal in 2018 for runners who complete the 5K, 10K and the half-marathon.
Despite the influx of runners last year on the first day of registration, the final number of participants reached 13,679 in 2017, the first time the race did not have at least 15,000 runners since 2012. Mirroring a trend from prior years, runners from all 50 states and 14 countries competed in the 2017 contest.
Competitors have more contests to choose: In 2012, 26,370 were counted in the United States versus 30,400 in 2016, according to Running USA.
This year’s marathon includes a 5K race at Wright State University on Sept. 14 and the 10K, half- and full-marathons starting and finishing at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on Sept. 15.
For additional information or to register, log onto www.usafmarathon.com .