Marathon runner disqualified after taking bus to finish line

There’s Amber Miller and then there’s Rob Sloan.

Amber Miller completed the Chicago Marathon despite being mere hours away from giving birth to her second child Sunday.

Rob Sloan finished third in the Kielder Marathon — “Britain’s Most Beautiful” — by hopping on a spectator shuttle bus about 20 miles into the race Sunday. This wasn’t exactly a case for Columbo.

“People in cars following the bus saw him get on and off. People saw him run through the bushes — we had him hook, line and sinker,” Dave Roberts, a marathon organizer, told the Associated Press. “Rob was distraught at having to come clean.”


Now, this is a marathoner. (HO / Reuters)

“I was third the whole way but somehow I crossed the line and was given fourth!” Steven Cairns, the runner who moved from fourth to third when the fraud was exposed, wrote on Facebook. “I started to doubt myself as he was adamant he had gone past me. I could understand him taking the goody bag and the T-shirt but to do the press interview claiming he was third...”

Sloan had won a 10-kilometer race Saturday — without an assist from mass transit — and ran out of gas in the marathon. “I’m convinced it was not premeditated,” Roberts said. “But he felt rough, pulled out and flagged down a bus. It’s as bad as drug-taking in my book because it’s attempting to improve your performance by cheating. I’ve never known anything like it.”

A committee will consider banning Sloan from marathons. Perhaps he should be sentenced to diaper duty at the Miller household.

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.
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