Medford’s Dave McGillivray, president of DMSE Sports Inc., has been appointed race director for the Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore on Dec. 5, one of the world’s largest road races, with 60,000 participants in four running events.
The Singapore marathon marks the first foray into Southeast Asia for Boston area-based DMSE (dmsesports.com) and McGillivray, the longtime race director of the BAA Boston Marathon and a number of other mass-participatory athletic events throughout the region, across the nation and around the world.
McGillivray and two members of his team, Ron Kramer and Bob Barnaby, recently returned from a five-day trip to the modern Asian city, where they met with course designers and worked on logistics.
The Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore (marathonsingapore.com) on Dec. 5 is unique in that it will include a half marathon and 10K race in addition to the marathon, all starting from different points in the city of 5 million people, but ending at the same point. The race will attract top elite athletes in each category competing for $200,000 in prize money.
McGillivray, who has produced or consulted on more than 900 mass-participatory athletic events over 30 years, said the Singapore marathon easily ranks among the most challenging in his career.
“The plan for conducting three separate starts with a total of 60,000 participants is exciting but also daunting and complex,” McGillivray said. “The 10K, half and full marathons all merge together with about three miles to go. That’s a challenge, so we are trying to figure the best way to start them and the best times to start them to avoid density issues and avoid elite runners from having to run around slower runners.”
Besides the Boston Marathon, DMSE manages more than 30 races per year, including the TD Bank Beach to Beacon 10K in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, the Bellin Run in Green Bay, Wis., and the upcoming Denver Marathon.
In addition to the Singapore marathon, DMSE is affiliated with a number of other well-received new races in 2010, such as the Run to Home Base 9K at Fenway Park, the Harvard Pilgrim 10K at Gillette Stadium and the recent inaugural Run Gloucester! 7-Mile Road Race on Cape Ann in Massachusetts.
In Singapore last week, McGillivray and his team toured all three courses in a bus and met with the local operations team to review the existing plans as well as sponsors and local media. Now in its ninth year, the Singapore marathon is under new management this year, leading to a makeover that includes course redesigns and additional events.
The event is sold out at 60,000 participants, divided among the marathon (15,000 runners), half marathon (20,000) and 10K (20,000) as well as a Kid’s Dash (5,000). In addition, the event will feature an Ekiden relay in which six runners complete the 26.2-mile marathon in a team relay format.
The marathon is organized by the Singapore Sports Council, with Standard Chartered Bank as the title sponsor. David Voth, co-founder of the World Triathlon Corporation and a longtime colleague of McGillivray, serves as the race’s organizing committee chairman. Voth tapped McGillivray for his expertise.
McGillivray said he returned to Boston impressed by what he saw and who he met.
“What an absolutely stunning city with wonderful citizens,” McGillivray said. “The existing race committee is very experienced and extremely dedicated to making this event one of the very best in the world. There are a number of challenges, but we all feel confident that the event will come off very well, based on all the planning that has and will continue to go on. The DMSE team is both honored and excited to be involved in such a special event.”
DMSE is looking forward to pursuing other opportunities in Southeast Asia, McGillivray added.
“Although we have conducted races internationally before in Peru, Bermuda and the Bahamas, the Singapore marathon will indeed be a major entry into the international market for us,” he said. “This is going to be very exciting, and we are thrilled to bring 30 years of event experience to the Southeast Asia market.”
Founded in 1981, DMSE Sports, Inc., of North Andover, is a leader in sports event management, specializing in creating, marketing and producing mass participatory athletic events throughout the U.S. and abroad. McGillivray has produced or consulted on more than 900 mass-participatory athletic events throughout the world, including 23 Boston Marathons; the 2004 and 2008 USA Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials, the 1990 Triathlon World Championship, the 1998 Goodwill Games Triathlon, and the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. For more info, visit dmsesports.com.