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Boilermaker woes: registration down, loss of General Motors as sponsor

By By JASON POWLES

UTICA - The Boilermaker Road Race is about seven weeks away and Thursday officials confirmed that General Motors will not renew their sponsorship with the race.

That doesn't mean the race is in any kind of financial trouble. GM had a three-year deal in place with the Boilermaker for a sponsorship for $100,000 and many inkind deals.

When that sponsorship ran out, there was some talk behind the scenes of working out another deal, which did not happen.

Executive Director Tim Reed said that while he's disappointed that GM is no longer on board, he is excited that the race has 10 new sponsors this year. He said without a doubt the race in is no financial trouble, and says that it is, in fact, doing very well.

His plan is to continue to make it the best 15k race in the country.

"There been talk about being concerned about being the biggest 15k in the USA," Reed said. "I'm not worried about that. I'd be worried if we weren't the best 15k in the country. If I thought we weren't going to be, I would be the first one to raise my hands and say 'Houston, we have a problem.'"

Reed also said he had two long time sponsors step up and ask what more could they do to make sure the race is the best it can be.

Boilermaker registration is down from this time last year. The 15k has just over 4,000 participants eager for Boilermaker weekend. But race officials are not worried. They say the reason is obvious.

"Numbers are lagging a little bit behind last year, but last year's was the 30th and the anniversary year tends to be higher," said Mary McEnroe of the National Distance Running Hall of Fame. "We had a record number last year. We are probably on schedule to hit the numbers we had in 2006 and 2005. The numbers are still very strong."

Officials expect registration to pick up soon, because time is running out to get the discounted entry fee. Right now, the 15k costs $30. But come June 11, the price goes up to $40.

You can sign up at

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