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Old 10-12-2019, 07:24 AM
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Eliud Kipchoge: 1:59:40


That was his time in a special marathon organized for the purpose of seeing him finish in under 2 hours.

He had help from a flat course, ideal conditions, high-tech shoes, and a small army of pace-setters. But this is a stunning achievement.

1:59:40 equates to a per-mile time of 4:34 (over 26.2 consecutive miles). At a rough estimate, perhaps 1% of humans are capable of running 1% of that distance at that speed.
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Old 10-12-2019, 07:35 AM
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I saw his pace makers backing off towards the end - where they there through the course or did they change them? Because they would have all been under 2 hours as well.
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Old 10-12-2019, 07:57 AM
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They swapped pacers in and out throughout to help maintain the pace, guiding them with lasers off the car in front to ensure maximal coverage for Kipchoge.

Whilst an impressive achievement, it’s not been done in a race and has been done with a bunch of contrivances (including shoes that aren’t generally available to the public as well as the pacers stuff and a variety of other things). He’s proven it can be done but it’s difficult to say what this performance would actually be in normal circumstances. Arguably, he’s just run 2:02 but everything else has taken him over the line. This is still amazing! But I’d want to see this happen without all the bells and whistles I think.

I have been influenced in my thinking. Here’s a podcast I listened to last week that covered misgivings about this before the attempt happened. I agree with the logic laid out:

http://https://podcasts.apple.com/gb...=1000452813027
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Old 10-12-2019, 08:51 AM
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Yeah, I think the part that makes it really dubious is that the pacemakers who shelter him from air resistance are not part of the race, they just come and go and are not racing the full distance. It's pretty fake to do that, giving the false impression that these are like pacemakers in a real race. If the pacemakers don't need to race, why even use humans - you might as well shelter him with a fairing mounted on the lead vehicle.

Last edited by Riemann; 10-12-2019 at 08:54 AM.
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Old 10-12-2019, 09:11 AM
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That's basically what they did for his previous attempt - there was a car in front with a giant clock on top of it, ostensibly to show the time but actually it also provided a fair bit of shelter from the wind.

Cumbrian is right, which of course is why it's not an official record time. Still very impressive, and it proves that it probably will be achieved in race conditions in our lifetimes - you just need five or six runners all as good as Kipchoge, then they can act as their own pace setters.
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Old 10-12-2019, 09:24 AM
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I saw the headline about this and thought it was impressive. Now it's still impressive but less so.
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Old 10-12-2019, 09:35 AM
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Im more impressed by this guys 4:34 beer mile

https://www.flotrack.org/articles/50...-record-to-434
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Old 10-12-2019, 10:23 AM
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I might be impressed by that, if I had any idea what a beer mile is. Running while holding a beer? Running while drunk? The link doesn't say, either.
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Old 10-12-2019, 10:35 AM
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..Arguably, he’s just run 2:02 but everything else has taken him over the line. This is still amazing! But I’d want to see this happen without all the bells and whistles I think.
Yes, we already know he can run under 2:02 under proper race conditions - and it's utterly astonishing that a human being can do that. That's the world record, and that's his real achievement. Some artificial aids to put up a non-record in an under-a-round-number time doesn't add anything for me.
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Old 10-12-2019, 11:27 AM
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I might be impressed by that, if I had any idea what a beer mile is. Running while holding a beer? Running while drunk? The link doesn't say, either.
Some research indicates it is drink a beer, run 1/4 mile, repeat.

Brian
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Old 10-12-2019, 01:43 PM
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I was wondering if any one else was paying attention to this.

In my mind, it's not as impressive as his 2:01:39 at the 2017 Berlin Marathon (or, for that matter, Lelisa Desisa's 2:01:41 this year), for all the reasons cited - the pacers, the car, the lines painted on the roundabouts in the course, to show him the fastest routes. Still, the man basically sprinted for twenty-six point two miles. That's an amazing feat, regardless. So yeah, I'll say that Kipchoge is the greatest marathoner ever.

I think his next goal will be to do it in a world-record eligible race. Next year's Berlin should be something to watch.

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That's basically what they did for his previous attempt - there was a car in front with a giant clock on top of it, ostensibly to show the time but actually it also provided a fair bit of shelter from the wind.

Cumbrian is right, which of course is why it's not an official record time. Still very impressive, and it proves that it probably will be achieved in race conditions in our lifetimes - you just need five or six runners all as good as Kipchoge, then they can act as their own pace setters.
There are ten runners this year who've gone under 2:05.

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Some research indicates it is drink a beer, run 1/4 mile, repeat.

Brian
...until you get to a mile, or puke.
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Old 10-12-2019, 01:55 PM
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I might be impressed by that, if I had any idea what a beer mile is. Running while holding a beer? Running while drunk? The link doesn't say, either.
As mentioned above, here are the official rules.

https://thebeermile.org/pages/beer-mile-rules

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
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Old 10-12-2019, 02:00 PM
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If someone can run 26 miles in a go, averaging 13 MPH, consider me impressed.
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Old 10-12-2019, 02:13 PM
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I would like to see this happen in full competition conditions. I'm not even sure I would be able to count this as an official record. Did it?
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Old 10-12-2019, 02:20 PM
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I would like to see this happen in full competition conditions. I'm not even sure I would be able to count this as an official record. Did it?
No. Because of the car, the pacers, the closed course, the race is considered “marathon distance”, but not an actual marathon.

Kipchoge does, however, hold the official men’s marathon record of 2:01:49.

Last edited by Slow Moving Vehicle; 10-12-2019 at 02:22 PM.
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Old 10-12-2019, 02:23 PM
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I'd accept use of a projected laser dot, or the like, for pacing, and markings on the road showing optimal turns. The human pacers (who break the wind for him), though, is definitely artificial. Sure, he'll have people ahead of him for at least part of a real race, too, and could even have people who are only in the race to improve his time, doing whatever they best can to ensure that. But in a real race, if he's going to break a record, at some point he's going to have to come out in front of everyone else.
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Old 10-12-2019, 02:24 PM
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This was more like setting a land speed record than a record breaking race time.
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Old 10-12-2019, 02:48 PM
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No. Because of the car, the pacers, the closed course, the race is considered “marathon distance”, but not an actual marathon.
More along the lines of, it's a "world best" but not a "world record." Road races like the marathon are the only events where anyone really cares about the difference, as opposed to a 100m "world best" that's not a record because it was wind-aided.

IAAF-recognized world records in the marathon are relatively new (I want to say they started in 2004, but I am not 100% sure), because it took that long to come up with a set of conditions under which a record would be recognized.
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Old 10-12-2019, 07:33 PM
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... or, for that matter, Lelisa Desisa's 2:01:41 this year ...
You may be thinking of Kenenisa Bekele - he ran 2:01:41 in the 2019 Berlin Marathon (Sep 29th).

Desisa's personal best is 2:04:45.
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Old 10-12-2019, 07:35 PM
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Kipchoge does, however, hold the official men’s marathon record of 2:01:49.
Actually 2:01:39 (2018 Berlin marathon).
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Old 10-12-2019, 07:55 PM
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This was more like setting a land speed record than a record breaking race time.
I'm not sure that's a good analogy. It's the artificial pacers breaking air resistance that's the main problem with this. You can't have a separately propelled fairing moving ahead of you breaking air resistance in a land speed record either. If this approach were used for something involving higher speeds (cycling, something motorized) then it would be seen as very obviously fake, since aerodynamic drag goes with the square of speed, and the difference would be enormous. It's hard to analyze how much difference the reduction in aerodynamic drag made for this runner at 13mph, but if this kind of attempt became a common thing, I think it would end up being an exercise in how efficiently you could arrange a bunch of tall guys to run in relay in some kind V-formation ahead of the protected runner, which I think is a bit silly.

Other runners sacrificing their chances by breaking wind for a protected runner earlier in a race has always been part of racing, so that's fine. But I'm dismissive of anything where pacers don't have to participate fully and and run the full distance from the start.

Last edited by Riemann; 10-12-2019 at 08:00 PM.
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Old 10-13-2019, 07:42 AM
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Yes, the difference will be small at these speeds, but then, it's small differences we're looking at (approximately 1 part in 60).

What about natural winds, though? I know that official marathon courses need to finish very near to where they started, but it's not unheard-of for winds to shift direction in an hour, nor for them to have a circular pattern, either of which could make it possible to run an entire marathon with a tailwind. Or you could start out upwind (when your teammates are still fresh enough to maintain speed), and end downwind (after your teammates have tired and fallen behind).

To take full advantage of this, you'd probably need very accurate weather reports and flexibility in when you scheduled your trial, and you'd probably still need to make several attempts to get it right. But it could be done.

Come to think of it, yet another option would be to run the whole thing with a crosswind, and to wear sail-like clothing that could be used to tack.
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:29 AM
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I'm not sure that's a good analogy. It's the artificial pacers breaking air resistance that's the main problem with this. You can't have a separately propelled fairing moving ahead of you breaking air resistance in a land speed record either. If this approach were used for something involving higher speeds (cycling, something motorized) then it would be seen as very obviously fake, since aerodynamic drag goes with the square of speed, and the difference would be enormous. It's hard to analyze how much difference the reduction in aerodynamic drag made for this runner at 13mph, but if this kind of attempt became a common thing, I think it would end up being an exercise in how efficiently you could arrange a bunch of tall guys to run in relay in some kind V-formation ahead of the protected runner, which I think is a bit silly.

Other runners sacrificing their chances by breaking wind for a protected runner earlier in a race has always been part of racing, so that's fine. But I'm dismissive of anything where pacers don't have to participate fully and and run the full distance from the start.
I didn't mean to take the comparison that far. Just pointing out that it's not a race, it's an attempt for maximum speed under the best possible conditions. In that respect I don't care about the pacers, but drafting is going too far, it's physically assisting the runner. It's not just about the minor reduction in drag affecting speed, it's a matter of stamina also, he's not burning energy as quickly either.
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:39 AM
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Quote:
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That's basically what they did for his previous attempt - there was a car in front with a giant clock on top of it, ostensibly to show the time but actually it also provided a fair bit of shelter from the wind.

Cumbrian is right, which of course is why it's not an official record time. Still very impressive, and it proves that it probably will be achieved in race conditions in our lifetimes - you just need five or six runners all as good as Kipchoge, then they can act as their own pace setters.
Which they did again.

Not only a wind break for Kipchoge but a wind break for the pacers (and a double windbreak for Kipchoge)

The car was driven at exactly the needed pace, eliminating the small variances even the best human is subject to. Losing even 5 seconds in a 5K has to be made up and at the pace he's running, he's on a razor's edge of human physiology. He would have to run 10 seconds faster on the next 5K to bring the pace back on schedule and that can push him over the edge into anaerobic running with the attendant build up of lactic acid and increased use of glycogen.

Chronos: The sail-like clothing would set up greater wind resistance with the high "local" winds caused by the movements of the limbs themselves.

Last edited by running coach; 10-13-2019 at 08:39 AM.
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:51 AM
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What was so high tech about the shoes and are they not allowed in competition?
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:31 AM
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Just pointing out that it's not a race, it's an attempt for maximum speed under the best possible conditions.
And my objection to your characterization stands. Providing artificial shielding from aerodynamic drag is not something that's any more appropriate in a time trial than it is for a mass-start race. It's artificial fakery, not "the best possible conditions".

Last edited by Riemann; 10-13-2019 at 09:33 AM.
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:36 AM
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And my objection to your description stands. Providing artificial shielding from aerodynamic drag is not something that's any more appropriate in a time trial than it is for a mass-start race. It's fakery, not "the best possible conditions".
Did you read the part where I said drafting was going too far? I wasn't saying it was a land speed record, I was pointing out how different that is from racing. To be more specific about this particular event instead of comparing speed records and racing records, I would just call it a stunt.
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:45 AM
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Did you read the part where I said drafting was going too far? I wasn't saying it was a land speed record, I was pointing out how different that is from racing. To be more specific about this particular event instead of comparing speed records and racing records, I would just call it a stunt.
You originally described it as like "setting a land speed record", which I disputed, since it's not true that anything goes for a land speed record either. In your follow-up you appeared to be defending your original characterization, but if your view is now that it's better described as "a stunt", then we're in agreement.

Last edited by Riemann; 10-13-2019 at 09:50 AM.
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:49 AM
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You originally described it as like "setting a land speed record", which I disputed, since it's not true that anything goes for a land speed record either. In your follow-up you appeared to be defending your original characterization, but if your view is now that it's better described as "a stunt", then we're in agreement.
I said "more like", clearly indicating I didn't see them as equivalent.
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:51 AM
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What was so high tech about the shoes and are they not allowed in competition?
I was wondering the same thing. Here's a brief article in The Independent that provides a thumbnail sketch.
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:54 AM
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I said "more like", clearly indicating I didn't see them as equivalent.
And I suppose an aardvark is more like a duck than a bunch of bananas. But it's not like a duck, is it?

Last edited by Riemann; 10-13-2019 at 09:56 AM.
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:59 AM
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And I suppose an aardvark is more like a duck than a bunch of bananas. But it's not like a duck, is it?
Are you having fun?
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Old 10-13-2019, 10:06 AM
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And I suppose an aardvark is more like a duck than a bunch of bananas. But it's not like a duck, is it?
BTW: Drafting is allowed for land speed records.
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Old 10-13-2019, 10:14 AM
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I'm sure Eliud is crushed that Riemann isn't sufficiently impressed.

Last edited by Chingon; 10-13-2019 at 10:14 AM.
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Old 10-13-2019, 10:23 AM
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It's allowed for the category of record in which it's explicitly stated in the name of the record - the motor-paced record. In cycling there are completely separate records kept for "unpaced" and "motor-paced" records, where the latter allows drafting. See here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...npaced_records

And that's because of what I said earlier - at the higher speeds involved in cycling, because aerodynamic drag varies with the square of speed, the difference between these two records is enormous. The difference at the lower speeds involved in running are smaller, but that makes it all the more important to note that this is something in a different category from normal running. And, contrary to what you suggested, the difference is not analogous to the difference between mass-start races and speed record attempts.
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Old 10-13-2019, 10:27 AM
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It's allowed for the category of record in which it's explicitly stated in the name of the record - the motor-paced record. In cycling there are completely separate records kept for "unpaced" and "motor-paced" records, where the latter allows drafting. See here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...npaced_records

And that's because of what I said earlier - at the higher speeds involved in cycling, because aerodynamic drag varies with the square of speed, the difference between these two records is enormous. The difference at the lower speeds involved in running are smaller, but that makes it all the more important to note that this is something in a different category from normal running. And, contrary to what you suggested, the difference is not analogous to the difference between mass-start races and speed record attempts.
I didn't specify any category, and the stunt turns out to be more like a speed record than I even thought. Also, a duck is more like a goose, than a chicken, but not a goose. I don't think that's difficult to understand.
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Old 10-13-2019, 10:45 AM
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I didn't specify any category...
The point is there is no such category in running, there is no such thing as a motor-paced running speed record. And Kipchoge wasn't trying to establish a separate category for motor-paced running, quite the reverse. Obviously he could have gone all-in and drafted much more efficiently behind a car-mounted fairing and gone faster still if that were his objective. Instead, he was trying to make this look superficially similar to the kind of human drafting that you get in a mass-start road race, to de-emphasize the difference, to make the advantage he was gaining less obvious.
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Old 10-13-2019, 11:12 AM
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You may be thinking of Kenenisa Bekele - he ran 2:01:41 in the 2019 Berlin Marathon (Sep 29th).

Desisa's personal best is 2:04:45.
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Actually 2:01:39 (2018 Berlin marathon).
Right on both counts.

I swear, judging by the quality and quantity of my cerebral flatulence, my brain must subsist on a diet of raw broccoli and baked beans. Thanks for catching that.
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Old 10-13-2019, 11:43 AM
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So, in a marathon (some of which have nearly a hundred thousand people running), it's impossible for everyone to start at both the same place and same time. Do the people in the back of the crowd have an earlier finish line than the ones at the front, or does their official time only start when they cross the starting line? Or do they just run a longer race than the folks up front, and nobody cares, because the serious contenders are all positioned up front?

And to the relevance to this thread, could a runner start out with "draft runners" who start at the same time as him, but start far enough ahead that their slower time would let him catch up to them?
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Old 10-13-2019, 11:58 AM
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So, in a marathon (some of which have nearly a hundred thousand people running), it's impossible for everyone to start at both the same place and same time. Do the people in the back of the crowd have an earlier finish line than the ones at the front, or does their official time only start when they cross the starting line? Or do they just run a longer race than the folks up front, and nobody cares, because the serious contenders are all positioned up front?

And to the relevance to this thread, could a runner start out with "draft runners" who start at the same time as him, but start far enough ahead that their slower time would let him catch up to them?
Time starts when you cross the start line. The usual set up is a RFID mat at the start, and one at the finish.
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Old 10-13-2019, 02:52 PM
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And to the relevance to this thread, could a runner start out with "draft runners" who start at the same time as him, but start far enough ahead that their slower time would let him catch up to them?
If you're not starting on the front row in a marathon you're going to be significantly slowed down weaving through the people in between you and your draft runners up ahead. There's really no way to avoid that in a sanctioned race. Putting a huge gap between the draft runners and the person going for the record with no other runners isn't going to be allowed.

I think for official records you go by gun time, not chip time, to avoid this sort of thing. Is that true or just a poor memory on my part?
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Old 10-13-2019, 02:57 PM
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I think for official records you go by gun time, not chip time, to avoid this sort of thing. Is that true or just a poor memory on my part?
I don't know, but they do let runners with good records in marathons start up in the front.
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:53 PM
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If you're not starting on the front row in a marathon you're going to be significantly slowed down weaving through the people in between you and your draft runners up ahead. There's really no way to avoid that in a sanctioned race. Putting a huge gap between the draft runners and the person going for the record with no other runners isn't going to be allowed.

I think for official records you go by gun time, not chip time, to avoid this sort of thing. Is that true or just a poor memory on my part?
Official records and elite/professional racers’ results are based on gun times; or at least, so it is in the races I’ve run. (I’ve won my age group in a couple of races, but they were small enough that there was no appreciable gap between gun and chip times.)

In big races like the Boston Marathon or the Peachtree Road Race, elites start first and separately; other runners are segregated into start waves, based on their qualifying times.

There was an instance some years ago of a female non-elite runner who started in Wave B of a big marathon, and actually ran a faster chip time than the elite woman who won the race; IIRC, the race director ultimately declared her the “amateur” winner, but let the elite winner keep her prize purse as the “professional” winner.
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:32 PM
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I swear, judging by the quality and quantity of my cerebral flatulence, my brain must subsist on a diet of raw broccoli and baked beans.
A marathon runner with a username Slow Moving Vehicle is such an apt combination for this thread that I think we can give you some pretty broad leeway.
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Old 10-13-2019, 10:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Slow Moving Vehicle View Post
In big races like the Boston Marathon or the Peachtree Road Race, elites start first and separately; other runners are segregated into start waves, based on their qualifying times.
In Boston, the elite women start early, the elite men are at the front of Wave 1 Corral 1. Unless they've changed things recently, I used to work at the starting line.
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Old 10-16-2019, 09:01 AM
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In Boston, the elite women start early, the elite men are at the front of Wave 1 Corral 1. Unless they've changed things recently, I used to work at the starting line.
Really? So are there non-elite runners in that first wave, as well? I’m a little surprised, if so.
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Old 10-16-2019, 10:23 AM
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Really? So are there non-elite runners in that first wave, as well? I’m a little surprised, if so.
https://www.boston.com/sports/boston...marathon-start
Here are the start times for the 2019 race, I assume 2020 is very similar:

Quote:
Men’s Push Rim Wheelchair: 9:02 a.m.
Women’s Push Rim Wheelchair: 9:04 a.m.
Handcycles and Duos: 9:25 a.m.
Elite Women: 9:32 a.m.
Elite Men and Wave One: 10 a.m.
Wave Two: 10:25 a.m.
Wave Three: 10:50 a.m.
Wave Four: Immediately after Wave Three runners are through the start line.
Each Wave last year was approximately 7500 runners, this year will be closer to 8000. There is a slight separation between the Elite Men and Wave One, maybe 5-10 feet IIRC.
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