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Runners Banned from Marine Corps Marathon for Breaking Minor Rule
by Nina Mandell
It may be frowned upon by race organizers, but giving entries to friends is nothing new in the running world. After all, signups for races begin months before the actual race giving time for injuries, other plans, forgetting to get in shape and a million other reason not to run it. When that happens runners often give (or sell) their entries to a friend (or random person on Craigslist, which we do not advise) and both people win: The original registrant gets their money back, someone who didn’t sign up for a race in time gets to run.
(We will say there’s a lot of reasons why this is bad: Security purposes, runner safety, making race organizers’ jobs harder, etc.)
And this usually works because no one asks for identification during the middle of the race from a middle of the pack runner who just finishes the race, grabs a free powerbar and goes home.
Unless, that is, the runner who received the illegally transferred entry wins the race.
Two men are now banned from Marine Corps Marathon events this year after organizers learned the top finisher, Gerardo Avila, at the Marine Corps 17.75K hosted in Prince William County, VA last weekend was illegally transferred his entry from Steven Henry. When Avila won he impersonated Henry in the post-race interviews.