Olympian shown telling team members how to cut at The Chicago Marathon

Benjamin Paredes represented Mexico as a former Olympian participant, Pan Am Marathon champion, and 1994 NYC Marathon runner up was caught on video telling a team of runners how...

Benjamin Paredes represented Mexico as a former Olympian participant, Pan Am Marathon champion, and 1994 NYC Marathon runner up was caught on video telling a team of runners how to go about cheating the Chicago Marathon.


In the video, he gives instructions aimed at those that do not wish to complete to run the entire marathon.

He instructs runners “Take the chip away. Take off the team shirt. Go walking at 21 and suddenly you get in, ”

The video has been making the rounds on social media and was featured in an article on sinembargo.mx.

I have received a number of reports of runners jumping in the course late, seemingly more interested in getting the medal than actually completing 26.2 miles.



I received the above picture in a message stating that this runner put the bib on at the 800m to go marker. The results for this runner confirms that she jumped in just before the finish. She hit no splits. The only mat she crossed was the finish.

I am sure I will be writing more about Chicago in the upcoming days. I have already identified a likely serial cheater that likely cut at Chicago this year – I’ve written about her before, and she is registered for the 2018 Boston Marathon off a suspicious result.


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10 Comments on this post.

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  • Daniel Burgoyne
    9 October 2017 at 8:47 am

    I ran yesterday and remember thinking that with all of the “out & back sections, it wouldn’t surprise me if people cut the course. There were timing mats strategically placed to combat this, so you’d likely have to know where each mat was to cut the course and get away with it.

    Leave a Reply
    • randy
      10 October 2017 at 1:31 pm

      “There were timing mats strategically placed …”

      I believe the preferred term is now “Rossi Mats”

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  • DM
    9 October 2017 at 5:12 pm

    I do not lose any sleep over these “medal seeker” types. There are simply too many of them to ever stop this sad practice. You can complain till the cows come home about integrity, accomplishment etc, but in the end it doesnt matter to these people or really to the races. I am more interested in the serial cheaters, the self-promoters, those seeking age group or better awards and of course the bogus BQ seekers – all rooted in narcissism, which to me makes the whole topic scientifically interesting.. I suppose Chicago could sanction the group that planned to possibly cut the course (did they?) much like Marine Corp punished “Jean’s Marines” many years ago for a big group course cutting. However, in the end there will be many other medal seekers to take their places.

    Looking forward to the forthcoming serial cheater article.

    Leave a Reply
  • Lisa
    9 October 2017 at 9:29 pm

    I don’t even understand how these people live with themselves. Aside from the fact they are devaluing the sport, I feel sorry for them they don’t know the feeling that comes with success born of dedication and hard work.

    Leave a Reply
    • DM
      10 October 2017 at 10:10 am

      Good article, Brian. I think Jean’s Marines was the canary in the coal mine.

      I agree that these people devalue the sport of running, particularly marathoning. In their minds I believe they feel that they have accomplished something just by entering and almost finishing (e.g Galloway marathoning program) and many probably believe they deserve a medal for that achievement. Deep down they know they didn’t *really* deserve it but since it is an otherwise minor issue in life they can live with that.

      Leave a Reply
      • Steve
        11 October 2017 at 1:14 pm

        Including Galloway in this thread is inappropriate and a disservice to the program. While most of the Galloway runners (yes, they are runners) will never qualify for Boston they train hard and would never consider cheating. The Galloway program is primarily a feeder for runners to train for a marathon or half marathon. I started that way and though I no longer use the run-walk method, I still occasionally volunteer as a pacer for one of their groups. Most recently this was the 3:45 pace group; a pace much faster than the average marathoner. Even exceptional runners will use this method. The winner of the 2017 Donna 110 Ultra ran the Disney World marathon the previous month using the Galloway run-walk. He did this to “save his legs” and finished under 2:53. The winner of the Donna Half Marathon started running with a high school Galloway program and his winning time was 1:18:22.

        Leave a Reply
        • randy
          11 October 2017 at 1:45 pm

          “The winner of the 2017 Donna 110 Ultra …”

          A friend of mine, who has completed 2 Badwaters, a dozen or so Umsteads, and various other Ultras likes to say: “Hundred-milers are all Gallow-walking contests”


          Leave a Reply
          • Bryan
            12 October 2017 at 1:21 pm

            Unless you are capable of running with Walmsley, the odds are you will be walking in a 100.

            But I disagree with the “Hundred-milers are all Gallow-walking contests”, it should be “Hundred-milers are eating contests, with bouts of exercise thrown in”.

  • Larissa
    10 October 2017 at 10:03 am

    This sounds very familiar to the accustomed ways of the Mexico Marathon. Again, makes me question if this is culturally acceptable… they think “eh just need to do a short practice run, why not catered?” Those that were cheating like this in Mexico, stated they paid for entry, therefore they were “entitled” to the aid stations (if they partook in any long enough to be on the course) and the finisher medal. This thought process seems like it’s fostered by way of culture (we all do it, so it’s fine).

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