Traveling through town: Local, international runners prepare for Carmel Marathon
The Carmel Marathon is more than just a “local” race.
In its sixth year, participants born in 47 different countries, plus the United States, are competing in the 2016 race April 16.
Countries represented include China, Japan, Italy, Greece, Kenya, Malaysia, Nepal, Nigeria, Romania, Scotland, South Africa and more.
“It’s cool to realize how running is such an international sport,” Race Director Todd Oliver said. “The first marathon was over 2,500 years ago in Athens, and we love to show that running brings people together from all over the world to enjoy the love and thrill of running. It doesn’t matter what size you are or where you are from. Anyone can compete in our races.”
To recognize the race’s international flavor, Oliver said he plans to have the represented countries recognized during the opening ceremony and announcements, including a good luck greeting spoken in several different languages.
Oliver is asking people to “cheer on their countrymen” as they run past. He’s also purchasing international flags to be placed along City Center Drive as well.
Oliver said he’s unsure if the international participation has grown significantly, because it’s a question that’s only recently been asked on registration forms. He’s been amazed by the response though.
He said it’s just one way that the Carmel Marathon weekend is raising awareness of the city of Carmel throughout the United States and possibly beyond.
As of April 4, full marathon race registration is up five percent compared to 2015, which Oliver said he’s happy with, considering the 2016 race falls on the same weekend as the Boston Marathon. The half marathon registration is about equal to last year, which Oliver said is great since it is the 100th anniversary of the Mini Marathon in downtown Indianapolis in May, which can compete for half marathon participants, even though they aren’t the same weekend. Registration for the 5K is up 25 percent compared to 2015.
In all, more than 4,000 people are expected to register for one of the four races: full marathon, half marathon, 8K and 5K. All four races start at once at 7:30 a.m. just outside The Palladium on City Center Drive.
Packet pickup is only available the day before the race at the fitness expo at the Monon Community Center from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Oliver said there will more than 40 vendors at the fitness expo and everyone – even those not competing in a race – is welcome to stop by and check it out.
Oliver also encourages residents along the route to come into their yards and cheer on the runners as they travel past homes along the race course. A full map with times can be found on at www.carmelmarathon.com.
There’s no “official” post-race party this year. Oliver said so many private businesses — restaurants, bars and athletic stores — are hosting their own parties that he said he didn’t want to compete with them.
Oliver said there should be no construction challenges for 2016 and there will be close to 100 police officers and 70 medical professionals lined up to help.
“Everything is lining up well, and we expect this to be the best race yet,” he said.
IMPORTANT DATES AND TIMES
Friday, April 15 (no packet pickup on race day)
11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Monon Community Center
7:15 a.m. Opening Ceremonies
7:20 a.m. National Anthem
7:25 a.m. Final Pre-Race Announcements
7:30 a.m. Start of All Events
8:30 a.m. Carmel 5K and Horizon Bank 8K Awards Ceremony
10:30 a.m. Half Marathon Awards Ceremony
11:15 a.m. Marathon Awards Ceremony
CASH PURSE FOR WINNERS
1st place male and female = $750
2nd place male and female = $500
3rd place male and female = $250
Half Marathon Purse:
1st place male and female = $500
2nd place male and female = $300
3rd place male and female = $200
Horizon Bank 8K Purse:
1st place male and female = $300
2nd place male and female = $200
3rd place male and female = $100
Male = 2:21:46 (2014, Jesse Davis)
Female = 2:42:13 (2012, Leah Thorvilson)
Male = 1:04:51 (2014, George Towett)
Female = 1:16:50 (2012, Mariska Kramer)
Horizon Bank 8K
Male = 23:05 (2011, Bobby Mack)
Female = 27:38 (2013, Ogla Kimayio)
Male = 16:23 (2015, Chase McQueen)
Female = 19:35 (2015, Eva Brungard)
Reserved parking for the Carmel Marathon Weekend has been secured at the Palladium parking garage. Additional parking is available in the gravel lot north of City Center Drive.
RUNNERS FROM AROUND THE GLOBE
Countries represented at the 2016 Carmel Marathon weekend:
- El Salvador
- Great Britain
- Hong Kong
- Russian Federation
- South Africa
- South Korea
- sri lanka
- United Kingdom