Google+ Running in Cork, Ireland: Ballycotton 10 numbers...1978 to 2015

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Ballycotton 10 numbers...1978 to 2015

You can be looking at numbers until you're blue in the face but sometimes a nice simple graph makes the data jump out. The chart below shows the number of finishers every year since, sub 60 mins, sub 70 mins and sub 80 mins....

a) Overall Numbers....As you can see, after an initial surge it was steady for most of the late 80's....grew slowly until about 2003-4 and then it really took off. The dip in 2001 was due to the Foot & Mouth crisis when the March event was cancelled and it was held in June instead. The record peak in 2006 was when the organisers left entries open until a certain date I think and loads of people entered. It's been restricted since then but the numbers turning up has been growing gradually.

b) 80 plus finishers......In the 'Results & Photos post', a number of people left comments saying people didn't require water for a 10 mile race. Perhaps that might have been the case before the year 2000 when most finishers were running under 80 minutes. That is no longer the case and as you can see above, those with finishing times over 80 minutes now make up a clear majority.

c) Fast runners......The numbers are small but I think you can see that the numbers breaking the hour mark  in recent times are down on the numbers back in the 80's and 90's. It's remarkable how steady the number of the sub 70 minute runners has been. It's about the same every year since 1983 despite the huge jump in overall numbers. For the last decade, the number of sub 80 minute runners has been pretty steady.

d) Women.....One major factor in the graph above is that there are now a lot more women running. Years ago, the % of women in the race was down around 20-25% whereas now, it's about 39%. As women in general are slower than men, they would account for a lot of the finishers over the 80 minute mark.

Another stat to consider is this. Last December, about 3700 people entered the Ballycotton 10. Last Sunday, about 2700 took part which means 1000 people didn't make it to the start line. That's about 27%. No doubt some people got injured or maybe they had to work but I'd guess the majority of that 1000 are people who had great intentions of doing it last December but never ended up doing the training. The remarkable thing is that it is pretty consistent every year...about 1000 don't turn up.


Anonymous said...

Sometimes I wonder for those of us who get injured and know well before the race (say a month or 6 weeks) before why can't the committee be contacted and a name adjustment made to the entry it's all on computers these days and it allows those who may really want to enter but didn't get a chance have the possibility to do so.

John Desmond said...

I think the problem is just the scale of it and it is all run on a voluntary basis.

It sounds grand in theory but only when it's for a handful. If they allowed people to cancel then someone working as a volunteer has to cancel hundreds of entries and how do they give these out again? If there was a waiting list then it's a load of more work.

Add to that the fact that they can only handle about 2700-3000 runners turning up on the day. If they were to re-issue cancellations then they would have to reduce the initial number.

The current system is just a lot less work.

Anonymous said...

With the increase in numbers it takes longer to get to the start line once the gun goes off. It took me over two minutes and I was sub 80 but obviously it affects the times also.