08 May 2009
Highlights from the Fargo Marathon Check-In
It was down right nippy today. The wind helped make it feel like below freezing. No snow fell. Heading up to the Dome was a chore with the wind coming out of the north. Still, I got there on time and took my place at Chip Verification.
This year a Boston Marathon participant did most of the work at the table. I answered questions and took over after 8PM. I must say I am a bit intimidated by Boston participants because I know I could never get a time below 3:30 to qualify. I am not a sprite by any means and don't have that cross country runner DNA.
In the chip world, this year's chips can be kept as souvenirs. I joked that they could be kept and eaten. Imagine that- a edible timing chip. I think licorice would taste good. Participation certainly appeared to top 14000+ tonight.
Once again it was enjoyable to chat a little with the runners, try to pronounce their names, talk about their towns, and encourage them. ( I learned of a few towns in Minnesota I never knew existed.) There seemed to be a larger proportion of red haired women this year. The Boston Marathon participant I worked with even had a vaguely red tinge to her hair.
I filled in at the elite runner check-in for a bit while one of the marathon committee members took dinner. I checked in about 3 elite runners. I say about because I was on the third one when the guy returned. The Kenyans who are to run must have checked in earlier because I saw none. One of elite runner was a lady from where I grew up. We're about the same age but she went to Hastings. My sister might know her. In the picture to the right you can see the 2 Sondags (one won the marathon last year in exciting fashion) and another elite name Kelly. I forgot his name. There was another guy apparently sponsored by Anneheuser Busch who was looking to get into the half. Not sure if he ever did. I wonder if the Kenyans will start the race if the weather is going to be as cool as it was tonight. With a north wind the temps could feel rather arctic. It hasn't been like this since the first marathon 5 years ago.
Once again Chris Myers, the eldest of the Myers clan, will be running in the race. I forgot what he ran last year but this year he will run the marathon. His goal is under 4 hours. Certainly a formidable task. Have good run Chris!
Different from previous years, the kids races were run this evening rather than after the marathon on Saturday. It was an unexpected energy boost to kick off the events. The kids race is one of the largest in America and there was plenty of support.
After 9pm I returned home and then went out to inspect part of the course near my domocile. I ran the south bound from a few blocks south of Main to 13th and then up 8th. 8th was the only somewhat troublesome surface. The road is uneven in some places and may throw off candences. I also had the opportunity to try one of the porta-johns. It was fresh, clean, and new.
See you tomorrow.