The Cost of Racing


Do you race once a month, once a week or once a year?  Whatever your race schedule looks like everyone could agree, whether it’s a 5k or 100 miler the cost of racing can get a bit expensive.  In the world where everyone is looking for a bargain where do you get the best bang for your buck?

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A good friend of mine, (Veteran ultra runner,) George N. and I discussed this during a recent 20 miler, without the facts at hand we still concluded that the best bang would be from the longer races.  But with the power of the internet at our fingers tips…let’s see how the facts line up.

I polled some local events and here is what I found out.

Average cost of a 5k, $32.50 ($10.48 per mile)

Average cost of a 10k, $45.00 ($7.25 per mile)

Average cost of a Half Marathon:  $95.00 ($7.25 per mile)

Average cost of a Marathon: $125.00 ($4.77 per mile)

Average cost of a 50k: $90.00 ($2.81 per mile)

Average cost of a 100k: $165.00 ($2.66 per mile)

Average cost of a 100 Miler: $180.00 ($1.80 per mile)

Not only is the cost per mile a bargain at the longer races, but the time spent on the course is also in favor of the Ultra races.  The average 5k finish is 22:00 that offers the racers a value of $1.59 per minute.  The average cost per minute of a marathon (4:37 finish) is $.45 per minute.  The average cost per minute for a 100 miler figuring a 26 hour finish is  $.11

What does all this mean to you, the bargain race shopper?  The best value per race dollar is surly on the side of the longer races.