Back in January I wrote about registration being open for the 2014 JFK Runway Run.
I had planned to write another post about it as a reminder but it slipped my mind and the race has passed- it was this past Sunday.
Runway runs are probably my favorite kind of races to participate in. They are a unique kind of race and offer access and views at the airport that are usually not possible.
The JFK Runway Run has become an annual race for me, running in it the past 3 years now!
Checkout my Runway Run Race Recaps:
- JFK Runway Run 2012
- Teterboro Airport Runway Run 2012
- LaGuardia Airport Runwau Run 2012
- Chicago O’Hare Runway Run 2012
- JFK Runway Run 2013
Entry into the JFK Runway Run includes a very nice race t-shirt as well as entry into a raffle where you could win free airline tickets. (There is also an additional raffle that you can buy tickets into which also offers airline tickets as well as other prizes.)
The 5K: We got to JFK around 8AM and it was definitely a bit chilly out. Once we got moving, I started warming up about 1 mile in. During the first mile the airplane views were incredible. Many planes came in for landings, some seeming to be just over our heads. It felt almost like I coud reach out and touch the bottom of the plane! When runners got to the mid-way point, we got to see an American Airlines plane parked. I would’ve liked to have stopped for photos but didn’t want to mess up my pace.
After not running in over a month, I was pretty happy with the results. Kim and I stuck together during the race, finishing in 32:23, definitely nothing to brag about but still a respectable time. When it comes to running, I feel it’s about finishing, not the end time in itself.
After the Race: In years past, after the race there were bagels and a small goodie bag with items like Clif/ Kind Bars, gel shots, water and more. This year the only thing available after the race were bananas! Considering that I don’t eat bananas, I learned a valuable lesson- eat something before running!
The Raffles: Raffle tickets are sold for $5 each or a book of 5 for $20. Each registered runner also gets entered into a free raffle with the main prize being an airline ticket.
Kim and I each bought a book of 5 raffle tickets. In years past I’d say at least 10 flights (maybe more?) were given away. This year there were only 3- 1 flight as a prize for the free raffle and 2- round trip flights for the paid one. There were also some other prizes (think donated gift baskets from smaller sponsors).
After some of the race winners were announced it was time for the first prize. The prize for the included raffle was 1 roundtrip flight on El Al to Israel from NYC.
While they started to call the winning number, I made a comment about this prize- what do you do with one ticket to Israel? I mean, if you’re single and want to go then this is great but with Kim and Lucas part of the team, I’m not gonna head to Israel by myself.
Then again, what are the odds that I’d win the prize. There were after all, 1,300+ runners here for the 5K.
Picking a winner started to become a bit of a joke. I’d say that 5 numbers were called but after each announcement, nobody came up to claim their prize. Then, all of a sudden I was locked in- I heard the #s 1, 5, 9……3! Wait a second, that’s my #!
I made my way to the front to accept my prize and then posed for some photos. (I was hoping that they would be on the race site by now, but there has been no such luck as of yet.) After getting back to where I was standing, I was congratulated by many people standing close by.
I then had to check out what was inside the small bag. Besides a paper with instructions on how to redeem the ticket, El Al also included a nice luggage tag, an El Al key chain light, small pouch and a booklet with info about the airline.
Once we left, I had a chance to read the full letter and get some more bad news. Not only did I have a problem with winning only one ticket, ticket is only bookable on limited dates!
I don’t really get it. If an airline is going to do a nice gesture and donate a free flight for a charity, can’t they at least make it where it isn’t a complete pain to book? Maybe that is the hope. We’ll give away a flight and limit the dates it is bookable in hopes the winner does not actually take the trip!
Based on the dates the ticket can be booked, it is going to be very hard for me to take advantage of my good fortune. This should be really exciting but instead it seems like a pain in the butt!
If I can come up with a date to use the voucher, it is going to cost me at the cheapest, around $700 each to buy a ticket for Kim and Lucas. And these cheaper flights to Israel aren’t even on El Al.
So what do I do? Try to make this work or figure something else out? Is anyone interested in buying a ticket on El Al to Israel? 🙂