Annual 10K changes route, loses sponsor
Kingston Classic to be held in Rondout area, Port Ewen; HITS no longer involved
The Kingston Classic race is expected to have a new route in 2017 that will be largely in the city’s Rondout district and partly in the neighboring town of Esopus, and HITS (Horse Shows in the Sun) no longer will be a co-sponsor of the event.
The planned new route — which would take runners over the old Rondout Creek bridge into the Port Ewen section of Esopus, and then back into Kingston via the same bridge — picked up the endorsement of the Esopus Town Board at a meeting Wednesday evening.
Carlos Perez, a co-director of the race, said Thursday that organizers still are awaiting the approval of per-
mits for the new course.
The other co-director, Ronald Swart, told the Esopus Town Board that the turnaround point will be where Old Route 9W meets Route 9W in Port Ewen. Route 9W itself will not be part of the route, he said.
In recent years, the Kingston Classic has been run largely in Uptown
Kingston, plus small parts of the towns of Ulster and Hurley. In HITS’ three years of co-sposnorship, 2014-16, the event included a marathon (which reached into Marbletown), a half-marathon, a 5K and a family mile run in addition to the main 10-kilometer race. This year’s Kingston Classic will include only a 10K and 2-mile run.
The Kiwanis Club of Kingston took over the Kingston Classic starting in 2011 and remained a involved
during HITS’ three years.
Perez, who’s with Kiwanis, confirmed on Thursday that HITS no longer is associated with the event, and he called it “an amicable decision.”
“HITS was a strong partner with us at the Kiwanis ... and we mutually decided to part ways,” he said. “... HITS staff has continued to be very helpful in laying out the new race course with us.”
Swart called the parting
“a mutual agreement” because “it just wasn’t working for either one of us.”
HITS President and CEO Thomas Struzzieri said in an email Thursday: “This was a mutually agreed upon decision. HITS is leaning towards events that either are larger or we think have the potential to be larger events. Kiwanis was a fantastic partner, and we have nothing but respect for them and will always consider the Kingston Classic a friend of the HITS company.”
The 2017 Kingston Classic, which will be the 35th running of the race, is scheduled for Sunday, April 23.
Swart said the town of Esopus’ support of the planned new route was required by the state Department of Transportation.
“They do have a requirement that we get ... something in writing from any municipality that we travel through,” he said. “We need
to have no objection from that municipality.”
The start and end points for the 2017 race have not yet been announced.
“It (the course) is still a work in progress,” Perez said. “We are considering all kinds of options to avoid road closures, but I am confident we will have a course that appeals to all types of runners.”
Kingston Classic participation peaked in 1992 with 1,395 entrants and 1,246 finishers.
Runners participate in the 2015 Kingston Classic.