Runners Forum - Kick Runners banner
1 - 2 of 2 Posts

· Registered
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all - not sure where to post this but I wanted to share this terrible news. I ran the half in Little Rock yesterday and there was a death of a 27 year old marathon runner at the finish. Story below ...<br><br><a href="" target="_blank"></a><br><br>
LITTLE ROCK MARATHON : Runner’s death casts pall over event<br><br>
Tamrat Ayalew just had a feeling.<br><br>
Hellen Rotich had a streak to start.<br><br>
Both were winners at the sixth running of the Little Rock Marathon, which started and finished in the Little Rock River Market District on Sunday.<br><br>
But the day won’t be remembered for Ayalew or Rotich’s victories.<br><br>
What none of the winners knew was that moments after their race was through, one of their fellow competitors would die after crossing the finish line.<br><br>
Adam Nickel, 27, of Madison, Wisc., crossed the finish line in 3: 02. 07, easily qualifying for the Boston Marathon — as the public address announcer proclaimed with Nickel holding his arm high.<br><br>
Almost immediately after Nickel raised his arm, two members of the race’s medical staff grabbed Nickel, who seemed to be in trouble.<br><br>
Workers spent nearly 20 minutes trying to revive Nickel, providing both cardiopulmonary resuscitation and defibrillation before placing him on a stretcher and carrying him to a waiting ambulance.<br><br>
To casual observers at the finish line, it appeared that medical workers were trying to help an injured runner. The music continued and the names of runners were still read over the public address system.<br><br>
Race director Bill Torrey said that crews kept the finish line open and did their best to keep things running normally until the final racers crossed the finish line sometime after 3: 45 p.m.<br><br>
Nickel was pronounced dead at the UAMS Medical Center in Little Rock at 11: 59 a.m.<br><br>
No cause of death was given at a late afternoon news conference, but Dr. Kent Davidson, the race’s medical director, said race day temperatures warming into the 60 s were not considered a factor. More than 50 runners were treated for a variety of ailments, most heat-related issues, a number that was slightly above average for the Little Rock Marathon.<br><br>
Officials said it was difficult to continue, but that the people who entered and competed in the race deserved their best effort.<br><br>
“It’s a tragedy, but we also have a field of other athletes who are still running and participating and celebrating a great race day,” executive race director Gina Pharis said. “We have to keep that in perspective.” Ayalew said he had yet to run even one mile when he knew who was going to win Sunday’s race.<br><br>
“From the beginning of the race, I knew that the winner of the race would be me,” Ayalew said.<br><br>
It proved to be more than just boastful thinking as Ayalew, a native Ethiopian who now lives in Atlanta, easily won the men’s division. Ayalew’s winning time of 2: 24: 46 was faster than last year’s winning time of 2: 27: 09 by Przemek Bodbowski but well off the record pace of 2: 19: 48 set by Charles Kamindo in 2006.<br><br>
Rotich was running in just the second marathon of her career.<br><br>
The Harding University graduate and native Kenyan won easily, as well, outpacing Little Rock’s Leah Thorvilson, who finished second.<br><br>
“I’m so happy to win, it’s just amazing,” said Rotich, who won her first marathon in November in San Antonio and finished Sunday’s race in 2: 50: 33, a little more than three minutes slower than last year’s winning time of 2: 47: 12 by Maria Cleofe’ Portilla.<br><br>
“I had never run marathons before, so I was a little shocked when I won in San Antonio,” said Rotich, who entered the November race after watching her husband do well in the Maui Marathon in Maui, Hawaii. “But this one, I felt a little more comfortable.” Ayalew began the 26. 2-mile race in a pack of eight runners, whittling that down to four by the 14 th mile, three by the 18 th mile and just two by the final three miles.<br><br>
“We started off at a very slow pace,” Ayalew said through an interpreter. “I had to start pushing the pace slowly and build it up. By the end of the race, we were at a pace I was comfortable with.” Part of the reason for Ayalew’s easy victory was a foot injury that hit second-place finisher William Serem of Kenya near the end of the race.<br><br>
William Serem said he took a wrong step and tweaked his foot as the runners passed the 23-mile mark and made the turn onto Cantrell Road off Riverside Drive.<br><br>
Ayalew said he was hurting at that point, but once he saw Serem pull up, he finished strong to win his fourth marathon in 10 races.<br><br>
Ayalew ran a 2: 20 marathon recently and said that his goal in Little Rock was to run a 2: 18. A hilly course and a strong headwind nullified any hopes of a record-breaking performance.<br><br>
“The course was up and down and that was a bit challenging,” Ayalew said.<br><br>
Rotich, meanwhile, ran into a little bit of trouble in the hills as well. She didn’t pass Thorvilson until about the 19-mile mark, in the flatter part of the course.<br><br>
Thorvilson said she didn’t realize she was leading the race until Rotich passed her around the 19-mile mark.<br><br>
“I thought that there were at least two women in front of me,” Thorvilson said.<br><br>
Thorvilson said she didn’t think it would have made a difference if she knew she was in the lead.<br><br>
“I was pretty much through when she passed me,” Thorvilson said.
1 - 2 of 2 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.