Philadelphia Bib Mule Gains Boston Entry for Undeserving Runner

Map centered on the city of Boston. Shallow depth of field

Brandon has never been a fast runner. Like many of us, it seems that his goal was just to finish the distance. He has run quite a few half marathons and marathons over the years. He even completed The Goofy Challenge at Disney in 2012. He ran The Half Marathon in in just under 3 hours, and the next day, he ran the full marathon in over 6 hours.

Nothing in his history suggests that he was capable of qualifying for Boston.

2018 Philadelphia Marathon

Brandon’s 2018 Philadelphia Marathon is an outlier.

Brandon has an official time of 3:08:XX at The Philadelphia Marathon. Prior to this race, he’s never broken broken 5 hours in any marathon, going back to 2003. Most recently he finished The Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon in over 7 hours.

“Brandon” at The 2018 Philadelphia Marathon –
2017 Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon – screenshot from marathon photo –

Suspicions were raised simply based on his Philadelphia finish time. The suspicions were confirmed through the photographs. The Philadelphia runner was not Brandon.

I have no reason to believe that the “mule” ran with the intention of earning a BQ time for Brandon. It is likely that he purchased the bib from Brandon and that Brandon took advantage of the situation. Neither is without blame, but I don’t know that the Philadelphia runner took the bib with the intent of running a Boston Qualifying time for Brandon.

2020 Boston Marathon

The Boston Marathon is a little over a month away, and Brandon is registered. He used a time that someone else ran while wearing Brandon’s bib. Brandon presumably took an entry away from someone that legitimately earned a spot.

I am forwarding the evidence to The BAA and to The Philadelphia Marathon. To be clear, I have been critical of The Philadelphia Marathon in the past. This incident was not Philly’s fault. I am confident that The BAA and Philly will act on this matter and that Brandon will not be able to permitted to participate in The Boston Marathon.

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  1. Guess he’s not familiar with your blog. With those times he would have stuck out like a sore thumb at Boston. Especially now. I have the same physique and times as this guy and sometimes I think jokingly, “dammit, you mean I could have run Boston that whole time when everyone was bib muling and getting away with it?” But who would try it now?

  2. As someone who lost 100 lbs in 1 year and dropped my mile pace by four minutes as a result, I have to ask, are you absolutely sure it’s not the same dude? I can’t tell enough about his face with the black bars covering them in one race and the hat in the other. Presumably you have higher quality images to look at.

  3. Dear Allie: I agree with Derek’s approach. However, you deserve congratulations for your fantastic personal successes. They are wonderful achievements. Well done.

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