It’s not every day that complete exhaustion, physical exertion and shin splints constitute a town-wide party, but it’s also not every day that the Fargo Marathon rolls around.
The 2014 version of the event marks the 10th anniversary of the race. The youth run is Thursday, May 8, and the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of ND/Discovery Benefits 5K Run/Walk is Friday, May 9. But the headliner is the Fargo Full and Half Marathon and 10K that take place Saturday, May 10, at 8 a.m. CT (9 a.m. ET).
It is a week-long event for the organizing committee, as Fargo Marathon on Twitter helps highlight:
The entire course route and map can be found here, via FargoMarathon.com, but the Fargo Marathon is known for stressing the fact that it features flat ground. That means runners will not have to fret over any of those gut-wrenching hills that nobody wants to run on a one-mile jog, let alone a 26-mile marathon.
The race began in 2005 with about 2,000 people starting from the Veteran’s Memorial Bridge. Since it is the 10th anniversary this year, the race will once again start at the bridge, only this time more than 24,000 people are expected. The Fargo Marathon will finish on Broadway in downtown Fargo at the Fargo Theatre, and afterward there will a celebration with food, music and fellow runners.
While there are bound to be a number of intriguing runners to keep an eye on with that many participants involved, one person who immediately stands out leading up to the race is Amy Reep.
Reep is 81 years old and will compete in the Fargo Marathon with her three daughters as part of a team relay. Reep plans on finishing her 5.5-mile portion of the race, and commented on it, via Amy Dalrymple of Inforum: “I guess it’s not about how fast I’m going to get there. It’s that I’m going to make it.”
Reep’s story is the stuff that marathons thrive on, but there also figures to be a number of top competitors and, of course, a winner. Peter Kemboi of Kenya posted the best qualifying time for the Fargo Marathon, per Jeff Kolpack of Inforum, and has to be considered the favorite heading into the race.
Kemboi is 34 years old, and his personal-best marathon time is two hours, nine minutes and 21 seconds. While that time came in 2007, he has been training in the altitude in Mexico leading up to Fargo.
He has a number of career marathon victories under his belt, many of which came in difficult terrains. Given that he has been training in the altitude in Mexico and the Fargo Marathon is known for its flat course, expect him to set a torrid time throughout the run.
Kemboi doesn’t necessarily have to pace himself for hills and obstacles, and he has bounced back from injury issues that hampered him in the aftermath of 2011. If you are going to pick a winner for the Fargo Marathon, look Kemboi’s way.
In any event, this year's run figures to offer plenty of enjoyment and celebration for all participants.
More information can be found on the race’s official website.
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