38th Los Angeles Marathon starts with the largest field of participants since 2020

LOS ANGELES (CNS) — The 38th Los Angeles Marathon is officially underway, and the wheelchair racers make their way across the 26-mile, 385-yard stretch from Dodger Stadium to Century City.

They were followed by the elite women, while the men took to the streets around 7 a.m. to compete in a race attended by 22,000 runners from all 50 states and 67 nations. This is the marathon’s largest field since 2020, when it had a record 27,150 participants, the 21st time in 22 years it surpassed 20,000 participants.

When the marathon was next run in November 2021 – eight months later than usual due to restrictions imposed by the coronavirus pandemic – there were more than 13,000 participants, organizers said. There were 14,300 participants for the 2022 race.

Mayor Karen Bass is the volunteer starter.

“As we emerge from the pandemic, more people are becoming more comfortable in large gatherings and the increased field size matches the annual growth in race attendance across the country,” Dan Cruz, the marathon’s communications director, told City News Service.

Ahead of Sunday, race organizers advised runners to watch their steps and look out for potholes caused by recent rains, and they also worked with the Bureau of Street Services to fill in as many as possible ahead of race day , according to Dan Cruz, Marathon’s director of communications.

According to the National Weather Service, it will be 54 degrees, cloudy with light winds at Dodger Stadium for the start of the race.

From Dodger Stadium, runners will travel through downtown Los Angeles, Echo Park, Hollywood, West Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Century City, Westwood and Brentwood and then back through Westwood to Century City where the finish line of the “Stadium to the Stars ‘ course is located on Santa Monica Boulevard between Avenue of the Stars and Century Park East.

When the first runner crosses the finish line around 9 a.m., it will be 57 degrees, with southerly winds of about 5 miles per hour, Weather Service meteorologist Lisa Phillips told the City News Service.

Light rain is possible from late morning through the rest of the day, Phillips said.

The elite women started 18 minutes and 19 seconds ahead of the elite men for the Morgan of the race & Morgan Marathon Chase, with the overall winner receiving a $10,000 bonus. The time difference is based on a calculation of differences in overall results among the top seeded competitors.

The chase was part of the marathon from 2004 to 2014, with women winning seven times and men winning four. It was discontinued in 2015 when the race served as the USA Marathon Championships. It was revived last year when Delvine Meringor became the eighth female winner.

The men’s and women’s winners each receive $6,000, runners-up $2,500 and third-place finishers $1,500. Men’s and women’s wheelchair winners will each receive $2,500.

The men’s race has been won by a Kenyan every year since 1999 except in 2011, 2014 and 2020 when it was won by Ethiopians. A US runner last won in 1994.

African women have won 10 of the last 13 races, including Meringor in 2022. Female runners from the former Soviet Union have won twice in the last 13 races. Natasha Cockram of Wales won 2021. A US runner last won the women’s race in 1994.

The field includes 107 veteran runners who have run all 37 previous editions of the race, including 81-year-old Sharon Kerson from Culver City, who will be running her 600th marathon. Her first was the inaugural Los Angeles Marathon in 1986.

Kerson has to run to finish the marathon. It is expected that it will take her almost 10 hours to finish the race.

More than 3,100 runners will participate in Students Run LA, an after-school mentoring and fitness program offered at more than 185 public schools in the Los Angeles area.

The race has 80 charity partners, with runners raising more than $2.5 million.

Its main charities are:

— Angel City Pit Bulls, dedicated to creating a better future for pit bulls through education, public advocacy, adoption and owner support;

— Students run LA;

— Team TMF, the fundraising team for the McCourt Foundation, which describes its mission as striving to cure neurological diseases while empowering communities to build a healthier world. The foundation operates the race; And

— Team World Vision, a Christian humanitarian organization that conducts relief, development, and advocacy activities to address the root causes of poverty and injustice in nearly 100 countries.

Among the runners running on behalf of a charity is Ryan Paddock, who will be running on behalf of the Asian American Drug Abuse Program, which provides drug abuse services to Asian Pacific Islanders and other underserved communities throughout Los Angeles County with programs and services for all individuals provided regardless of race or ethnicity.

The husband honoring the collapsed wife died after the LA marathon while running in this year’s race

Paddock’s wife Trisha Paddock ran on behalf of the program in last year’s 13.1 mile charity challenge, where all participants raise funds for one of the race’s official charities. She collapsed at the finish line and died, the race’s first fatality since 2007.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Craig Mitchell will run with a group of runners from the Skid Row Running Club, which he founded in 2012 to help its members get a second chance at life while battling their addictions .

The club’s roots go back to a man Mitchell sentenced to prison and then contacted through The Midnight Mission.

“For some reason, even though I sent him to prison, he decided he liked the way I treated him,” Mitchell said. “He found me and introduced me to The Mission.”

Mitchell soon decided that the best way to reach people was to walk.

“There are so many little things that emanate from this very basic idea of ​​running,” Mitchell said.

He’s since led three weekly workouts in downtown Los Angeles — 6-mile runs on Mondays and Thursdays and up to 18 miles on Saturdays.

“I’m not a big runner,” Mitchell said. “But the bottom line is my willingness to devote time to this venture.”

https://abc7.com/los-angeles-marathon-runners-race-dodger-stadium-to-century-city/12977782/ 38th Los Angeles Marathon starts with the largest field of participants since 2020

Laura Coffey

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