Runners with Boston qualifying times remain in the Philadelphia Marathon results despite missing mats, and sub 30 minute half marathon splits.
The Philadelphia Marathon was over two months ago. I wrote an article after a preliminary review. I decided to wait on the follow up to see what (if anything) the race did to clean up the results. Basically they have done nothing.
In my opinion a race that acts with such blatant disregard for the accuracy of their results should not be eligible to be a Boston Qualifying Race.
Below are some examples of runners that remain in the results and are qualified to enter the 2020 Boston Marathon. Most of the runners with suspicious results cut on the back half of the course along the out and back section. Since there is no published timing mat at the turnaround, some runners cut without missing any splits.
Boston Qualifiers and an Age Group Winner
There are a number of obvious course cutters that have qualifying times for the 2020 Boston Marathon.
1st Place Age Group Male 75-79
There is absolutely zero reason why this runner should remain in the results. He is the first place finisher in the Male 75-79 age group. His finish photos photo show him crossing the finish lines, arms raised in victory. He missed the half and 30k splits. He covered the distance from 10k to the finish in a 4:45 pace.
Boston Qualifier – Female Age 26
She ran the second half of the marathon in 15 minutes. Looking at the course map, it is clear that the runners that missed the 30k split turned around at some point after mile 14 and headed to the finish.
Boston Qualifier – Female Age 23
She missed the 30k mat. She went from a 10:47 pace between the 10k and the half to a 6:37 pace from the half to the finish.
Boston Qualifier – Female Age 42
She is a typical 6 hour marathoner. She ran a 22 minute half marathon.
What Can Be Done?
These are the most obvious cases. There are many more questionable results. I have included these in this article as the most obvious cases of course cutting. There is no justification for these runners to not have been removed from the results. There is zero chance any of them ran a marathon on that day.
The excuse I heard in the past was that the race did not want to risk a lawsuit stemming from a disqualification. That is absurd. These runners (and many others) did not run the race. They should be removed from the results. No one is going to sue a race for being rightfully disqualified.
The Boston Athletic Association has the power to force Philadelphia’s hand. They can demand accountability. By not taking the time to remove the most obvious of examples from their results, The Philadelphia Marathon is showing that they don’t care about the integrity of their race or the accuracy of their results. Boston should not allow the race (and others that act with similar disregard for the integrity of their results) to continue to serve as a Boston Qualifier beginning with the 2019 Philadelphia Marathon.
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