News that the Competitor Group Inc. has slashed its North American elite athlete program to the bone has moved through the running industry like poop through a goose. Then late yesterday came word that the San Diego-based event management and media company has cancelled two of its 30 Rock `n` Roll events, one in St. Petersburg, Florida, the other in Pasadena, California, as both had underperformed in their second years of operation.
As was speculated, private equity is a close-to-the-bone business that, like a shark, can’t stop moving if it hopes to survive and prosper. Performance is king, but not in the same sense as in racing. In that regard CGI is in a different line of work than other running event managers. For them running is only the tool used in their real game, the money game, rather than an end in itself for the betterment of community and the sport. And that’s fine. For many people the RnR experience is all they are looking for.
But in all the rigmarole of the last few days, there has been angry talk on social media of boycotting CGI events, to punish them for dropping elite racing from their events. That kind of negative reaction seems counter-productive and unnecessary. People will make their own judgements independently. And say what you will about private equity, tying CGI up with Oliver Stone’s “Greed is good” motto from his movie Wall Street is too facile. Continue reading