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Glitch forces Chicago Marathon to suspend registration until at least 5 p.m. Thursday

Updated: March 21, 2013 6:31AM



Registration for the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is suspended at least until 5 p.m. Thursday because of technical problems, but thousands of spots remain, organizers said in a statement.

A glitch with the race’s registration website thwarted some runners who tried to sign up Tuesday, the opening day for registration.

Some saw an error message; others reported duplicate registration and charges.

“We are incredibly sorry that runners interested in signing up for the 2013 Bank of America Chicago Marathon experienced such difficulties today,” race director Carey Pinkowski said in a statement. “We have been working nonstop with our registration provider to find the root of the problem and a solution.”

Race organizers said many runners were able to sign up for the race despite the technical problems. And there are still 15,000 spots remaining; 45,000 runners are expected to participate.

Organizers said they plan to provide an update by 5 p.m. Thursday.

“Before we re-open registration, we need to make sure all technical issues are permanently resolved. We will provide ample notice regarding when the registration process will re-open,” according to the statement.

People who were charged multiple times will receive refunds, race organizer said.

Registration for the marathon was suspended Tuesday afternoon, hours after runners began signing up.

ACTIVE Network, which runs the registration website, apologized in a statement and urged all who signed up to confirm their registration on active.com.

The Chicago Marathon uses open registration and has been filling more quickly in recent years. The field of 45,000 filled in 51 days in 2010; 31 days in 2011, and six days last year.

But Tuesday’s glitch could imperil the status of the Chicago Marathon as the rare major marathon with open entry.

“Each year, we look at all facets of the event,’’Pinkowski said Tuesday. “One of the things we will look at is open entry. One of the things we are known for is open registration.’’

The Chicago Sun-Times is a media partner of the event.

Contributing: Dale Bowman



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