Short story: it was a great race, beyond expectations. 5:15:21 !
Preparation: long runs, mostly 20-25 k each each weekends.
Metro: Subway from Times Square, R line to Whitehall, lots of runners, first call for a doctor on the platform
Ferry for Staten Island: I arrived in the terminal at 7:10, for my ferry scheduled at 7:30. I lined up toward dock #1. There were very long lines for ferry #1, which was unexpectedly departing at 7:15. The ferry added ferries to have 4 ferries an hour. As I didn’t know, and as it wasn’t on the SI ferry web site, i just waited for #1. I couldn’t make it. They closed the door in front of me and lots of other runners. Then everyone ran to door #3 for the next ferry. We had even longer lines for #3, departing at 7:30. That was my scheduled ferry. I just sneaked in. I walked in the orange ferry and found all seats taken in the id level deck. I walked up and had 10 seats for me. Lesson one on ferry: don’t wait for the first ferry, line up for the next one and go to the upstair deck.
Departure: I was in the blue corral, upright lane on the bridge 😉 I started in the 4th wave, most probably due to the fact that I selected back this Spring the 7:30 ferry to SI. Departure at 11:00, 2 hours after the men elites and wave 1 !
Departure area: Well organized with hot beverages and lot of space to relax and wait for the departure.
Music: I usually listen to music during long run and marathon but I had to get the earphones away after reaching the bottom of the Verrazano-Narrows bridge. The crowd was so loud I couldn’t hear my music.
Race Path: the classic 5 boroughs : fairly flat except for the bridges. Easier than the hills in Central Park.
Timing: 5:15 is nice, 32 minutes faster than Omaha, which is good.
Hills and bridges: I need to train on hills. Hudson River park is too flat 😉
Neighborhood: I enjoyed Williamsburg and the Bronx, Brooklyn and the Long Island city in Queens. Harlem and the 1st Avenue, the 5th avenue and the Museum mile. I found out that the 5th avenue is blocked in Harlem by a fairly large rock. Strange thing to find out in a Marathon.
Things I enjoyed: the continuous crowd support, the music (the DaftPunk look alike were amazing), the views of Manhattan from Brooklyn and the bridges, the crowd support (really amazing !), the organization, the relatively flat course. And the weather which allowed me to run in shorts and Namban Rengo T-shirt. And the crowd support…
I’m still training my daughter for her first marathon. In Hawaii, honolulu, on Dec 13th 2015. It will be a great day.