Summary

Highly recommended race, my first full, but very disappointing outcome. Could have been handled differently.
Posted Nov 12, 2023
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Pros
  • Low elevation
  • Great race for beginners
  • Excellent spectators
  • Awesome scenery
Cons
  • New race director

Marine Corps Marathon Review

As a back-of-pack runner, I trained five months to “beat the bridge” (checkpoints that close at specific points during the day due to time), and was on course to do so with time to spare. The day was extremely humid and somewhat warm, something runners had been concerned with and questioning leading up to the race, as Twin Cities had been canceled weeks before. We were assured race officials were monitoring, not to worry, etc. During the race, the  medical teams were so overwhelmed by the number of runners passing out and needing assistance (due to weather, among other things), it was decided at 11:55a to close the first gauntlet at 12p instead of 12:33p. This was communicated to runners via the tracking app (which I didn’t have, nor were my notifications on AS I WAS RUNNING), but even volunteers weren’t “in the know” to what was going on. There was a ton of confusion as runners were being diverted, yet still running on the course, just fewer miles. This allowed us to “finish” but not as “official finishers.” I’ve been to races in extreme, mid-summer heat where ice was available on the course, or where weather conditions made officials change the course pre-race and communicated to all athletes. Neither of these happened, and it felt like being cheated out of the opportunity. Was it necessary to save people? Very possibly, and I support that. Could it have been handled better? I believe so. Very disappointed. Besides that, aid on the course was excellent and did not seem to be waning as the race went on. The expo was smaller than I expected but still had a nice group of sponsors. Navigating to and from the race via metro was pretty easy and supported by metro staff. Would I go back and spectate? Absolutely! Plenty of  spots to see runners without having to travel too bad during the race. To run? TBD.

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Val Porter
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Just a mom on a journey to make her life better and show her kids a healthier lifestyle. Supporting and encouraging other ath...

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