The mental marathon continues for the thousands of runners waiting to hear the results of an investigation into Sunday's Marine Corps Marathon.
Capt. Jay Paxton, race coordinator, said the Marine Corps, in conjunction with The Athletic Congress (TAC), started looking into the situation as soon as they read about the missing one-third of a mile in Monday's Washington Post. Paxton declined to give any details of the investigation but said, "There are between 4,000 and 6,000 people out there who, I'm sure, are anxious to hear about the results of the investigation so we're working with as much expediency as possible."
Paxton could not specify any time when the investigation would be complete but Dr. Richard Goode of the Potomac Valley TAC said, "I hope within a week we'll finish looking into the course. We've got to talk to a lot of people. Nobody followed the race from start to finish so we have to talk to people along the way, the sentries and other race officials. We have to look into the places alleged to be short. These things take time."
A.J. Vander Waal, who measured the course before the race for Tac Certification and again after the race at which time he calculated the missing distance as 1,725 feet in four locations, said he is not participating in the current investigation.
Vander Waal said Paxton called him and, "never questioned me about the measurement which took place after the race. He (Paxton) wanted to know the exact locations of the four spots where the runners were off course. I would assume they are looking into those spots."
Goode said the main priority now is for "the Marine marathon to do everything it can to see that the runners get a fair shake as far as their qualifying."
The major problem will be finding out "if different groups ran in different places," said Goode.
Several runners have concluded that those whose Marine times could qualify them for the Boston Marathon almost certainly ran the shortened course.
One runner who chose not to be identified, said, "It's impossible that anyone in contention for Boston ran the proper course as I see it. I ran about 3:14 and didn't run the proper route at Hains Point and my friend, who came in at about four hours, also ran the short course."
Boston marathon officials have said that if accurate times were kept and the abbreviation in the race could be measured, adjusted times would most likely be accepted.