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  • Three deaths at Detroit Marathon

    Bad day for the Free Press Marathon...

    =========================================

    3 runners die in Detroit marathon

    BY KORIE WILKINS
    FREE PRESS STAFF WRITER

    Three men died this morning during the 32nd Detroit Free Press/Flagstar Marathon, police and race officials have confirmed.

    The first man to collapse was Daniel Langdon, 36, of Laingsburg, at about 9:02 a.m. ... between the 11- and 12-mile markers.

    Rick Brown, 65, of Marietta, Ohio, collapsed at 9:17 a.m., near where Langdon went down.

    And Jon Fenlon, 26, of Waterford collapsed at about 9:18 a.m., just after finishing the half-marathon in 1:53:37.

    Complete story: http://www.freep.com/article/20091018/S ... t-marathon

  • #2
    Terrible and sad. Bizarrely, these deaths all occurred within 16 minutes of one another. Two of them happened within a few blocks of my cousin's house, on a stretch that is not particularly strenuous. Indeed, other than the run through the tunnel from Canada, this course in my very flat hometown has no discernible hills.

    There is a lot of speculation locally that the cold weather (the race was run on a windy day with temperatures in the 40s) may have been the cause. And numerous calls, from people who mostly know little about the marathon, to move the event up by about a month to prevent it from being run in this type of weather again.

    Comment


    • #3
      If you add their ages together you get 127.

      And if you add those digits together you get the number 10.

      From the article we read the company line...

      "It's important to emphasize the rarity of it because far more people have health benefits from the sport than these type of issues occurring," said Keith Hanson, coach of Hansons-Brooks Distance Project, an elite running club based in Rochester Hills.

      Does he mean the sport of marathoning or running in general?
      The fool has said...there is no God. Psa 14

      Comment


      • #4
        wasn't it fairly windy because of the nor easter on sunday, winds wrapping around making it tougher...

        i had a 20 miler scheduled, but the 30 mph winds cut my run to 13..winds adding lots of stress even on a flat course..

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by TrackDaddy
          From the article we read the company line...

          "It's important to emphasize the rarity of it because far more people have health benefits from the sport than these type of issues occurring," said Keith Hanson, coach of Hansons-Brooks Distance Project, an elite running club based in Rochester Hills.

          Does he mean the sport of marathoning or running in general?
          What "company"? Hanson isn't listed as an official speaking on behalf of the marathon.

          It's obvious that for either the activity of running in general or marathoning WAY, WAY, WAY more people benefit from a health perspective than suffer fatal injuries. I agree with those who say that too many people who are not adequately trained are "running" marathons, but to blame marathoning/running itself rather than lack of preparation or pre-existing medical conditions is a myopic approach.

          Comment


          • #6
            NY Times had a story on the issue

            http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/1...pagemode=print

            Comment


            • #7
              All three were running the Half Marathon, not the marathon race, so the two that were still running were near the end of their race (between 11 and 12 mile marks) while the other guy had just finished in 1:53:xx -- 8:40 pace, which means for a 26-year old he was a jogger, not a fast or even modest-paced guy. One of the other two guys went off in a wave or one or two after the guy who had finished, while the guy was going about 10min/mile pace.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Al in NYC
                ...
                There is a lot of speculation locally that the cold weather (the race was run on a windy day with temperatures in the 40s) may have been the cause. And numerous calls, from people who mostly know little about the marathon, to move the event up by about a month to prevent it from being run in this type of weather again.
                Of course the Chicago Marathon, with far more runners, was run in even colder weather and.....

                (knee-jerk reactions tend not to make a lot of sense)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by gh
                  (knee-jerk reactions tend not to make a lot of sense)
                  My point precisely.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by KevinM
                    Originally posted by TrackDaddy
                    From the article we read the company line...

                    "It's important to emphasize the rarity of it because far more people have health benefits from the sport than these type of issues occurring," said Keith Hanson, coach of Hansons-Brooks Distance Project, an elite running club based in Rochester Hills.

                    Does he mean the sport of marathoning or running in general?
                    What "company"? Hanson isn't listed as an official speaking on behalf of the marathon.

                    It's obvious that for either the activity of running in general or marathoning WAY, WAY, WAY more people benefit from a health perspective than suffer fatal injuries. I agree with those who say that too many people who are not adequately trained are "running" marathons, but to blame marathoning/running itself rather than lack of preparation or pre-existing medical conditions is a myopic approach.
                    By "company" I meant the pro-marathon people in general. I agree with you that too many people who arent prepared are attempting marathons.

                    My point was that running in general has value beyond the associated risks, but I'm not sure marathoning does.
                    The fool has said...there is no God. Psa 14

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      An interesting (and sober) analysis is here:
                      http://www.sportsscientists.com/2009/10 ... ty-of.html

                      If you look at the deaths as random events rather than a systematic problem, it is not as suprising they all came from the half marathon. There were 3763 finishers in the marathon and 8392 in the half. These were the first fatalities at Detroit's races in the last 15 years. In that time there have been well in excess of 100,000 total runners (marathon, half marathon, 5k, relay). The average is about 1 fatality for that many, so it's out of the norm, but not as much as the headlines would suggest.

                      Also, Michigan has the 11th highest rate of death from heart disease of the 50 states. Only New York is ranked higher and holds a large marathon.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I wonder if shorter races might not lead to more cardiac-related incidents than the marathon itself? The line of thinking being that "everybody" views the marathon as the beast that it is and gives it some due respect. On the other hand, a half-marathon is a mere stroll in the park, so the ill-prepared might push themselves harder than they should, not realizing that 13M is a fur distance in and of itself.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Part of the problem might be people who drink too much water before and during the race. Somehow people think they need to drink gobs of water while exercising. When I run on the indoor track on our town's fitness center, I see people either running with a bottle or have it near by and stop every lap or so to get a drink.

                          Thus in a marathon with aid stations every mile or two and slow runners having no incentive to run thru like most did years ago, no wonder they over drink.


                          http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/g ... k-too-much

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                          • #14
                            As far as caridiac problems are concerned, racing shorter distances is probably more dangerous, since you elevate your heart rate to a higher level. But then, even if the frequency is 2-3 times higher in 5K than in half marathon, the latter has about 5 times of duration.

                            I am currently preparing for my first marathon in December. And I am under no illusion that this is better for my health than jogging at moderate pace for 30-45 minutes a day. On the contrary, if my only concern is my health, I'd rather jog slowly.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Is there any evidence to suggest the deaths might be related to one another?

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