Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Marathon winner disqualified for using iPod

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel has an article about a marathon winner who was disqualified for using her iPod during two miles of the Lakefront Marathon.

Jennifer Goebel originally finished in second place with a time of 3:02, but she was elevated to first place when the original winner, Cassie Peller, took a "rogue" water bottle from a friend rather than at a water stop. That water bottle cost Peller the win, and then the 2 miles of iPod use cost Goebel the win. Someone posted a picture of Goebel wearing an iPod between miles 19 and 21, and then the proverbial fit hit the shan.

The USATF recently modified their headphone ban, much to my happiness. Under the new rules, the race director:

may allow the use of portable listening devices not capable of receiving communication; however, those competing in Championships for awards, medals, or prize money may not use such devices.

Well, Goebel was competing for an award, medal or prize money (she won $500), so she falls into the category of someone who isn't allowed to use an iPod in an event.

She said that she only used it when she was bored because it helped to pump her up. I'm with you, Jennifer, but rules are rules.

It definitely stinks that her time was kicked out of the official results. Don't give her a medal or prize money--fine. But removing her time because she used an iPod for two miles? Seems a bit harsh.

That said, if I ever run a 3:02 marathon, I'm perfectly happy to give up all prize money and medals for using my iPod. You know, because it won't ever happen. Besides, I'd still have a big Garmin watch picture on my wall to remind me of my time.


Marlene said...

I'm more shocked about the water bottle thing. Is that a standard rule? No "aid" from outside sources?

ShirleyPerly said...

Well, technically being disqualified means that you were removed from the race so her result should not be posted. I know it sounds harsh but she cheated and so her race should not count.

lizzie lee said...

What was that? A Nazi Marathon?

"...those competing in Championships for awards, medals, or prize money may not use such devices..."

My interpretation of the rules: Was this marathon a Championship? Or just a Marathon?

And what's up with the bottle of water?

I would definitely not participate ever in a race like that. Not that I will ever have a chance to win, but, man, what are those organizers thinking?