Road Race Stats - Marathons & Other Running Races

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Salt Lake City Marathon - Facts and Stats

I had wanted to post this a few days ago, but I got behind. Before I post the stats, there are several things I found interesting about the Salt Lake City Marathon that took place last Saturday (4/23/05).

It was a very close race between Ethiopia's Araya Haregot and Kenya's Elly Rono. The two were even in the last mile until Haregot pulled away and won with a time of 2:15:14 (Rono finished second with a time of 2:15:36). Polands Dorota Gruca, who had a large lead through most of the race, won the women's race with a time of 2:30:07. Both the male and female winner won $25K.

The lead car apparently didn't do a good job at providing enough room for the front runners. From the Salt Lake Tribune article:

Haregot tried to separate from the pack at a number of spots earlier in the race but was caught each time - a couple of times by the lead car, which was going too slow and helped the rest of the runners catch him.

The marathon is at a pretty high elevation. The course starts at around 4800 ft and ends at 4247 ft. This may have affected the second place Kenyan. From the Salt Lake Tribune article:

"I started throwing up at the finish line," Rono said. "Maybe I took too much fluids. I don't know. Maybe it was the altitude."

Unlike Haregot, who lives at altitude, Rono trains in Chapel Hill, N.C., and had never raced in thin air before.

Like the Virginia Beach Marathon, they let the walkers begin first at 6:00am. This meant the runners would be passing the walkers in the race. The female winner of the Virginia Beach Marathon had collided with a walker. Looks like SLC Marathon did a good job at avoiding any of these incidents. I couldn't find any problems. Also, the winner didn't have a problem with it. The winner was quoted by the Salt Lake Tribune as saying: "Running past the other runners wasn't really a big problem".

If I were a walker, in addition to being able to finish the marathon an hour earlier, I would also enjoy seeing the elite runners go by.

Like the L.A. Marathon, the SLC Marathon had a pre-marathon bike tour. The SLC Marathon seemed to have more requirements than LA to ensure the bikers didn't interfere with the runners.

Finally, for next year, they're considering on adding a Jumbotron at the finish and live race tracking to make it funner for spectators.

The Salt Lake City Marathon Stats

One thing I was looking at in the stats was the effect of the high elevation (+4200ft). However, nothing really jumped out at me. The average male time was 4:20:52. The average female time was 4:44:30.

The weather was good. At the start around 7:00am, the temperature was 54°F with 38% humidity. By around 9:00am it had warmed to 59°F with humidity of 36%.

Here's how the average times compare with some other marathons this year. I'll just look at the thirties age group to avoid differences in age complicating the comparisons.

Average Times of the Thirties Age Groups:

SLC 2005:
Male: 4:17:14 (523 runners)
Female: 4:38:59 (390 runners)
Temperature: around 57°F

Virginia Beach 2005:
Male: 4:09:13 (332 runners)
Female: 4:30:30 (181 runners)
Temperature: around 43°F

Knoxville 2005:
Male: 4:15:11 (208 runners)
Female: 4:35:19 (98 runners)
Temperature: around 47°F

Little Rock 2005:
Male: 4:14:46 (152 runners)
Female: 4:39:09 (77 runners)
Temperature: around 55°F

New Orleans 2005:
Male: 4:24:48 (302 runners)
Female: 5:14:29 (292 runners)
Temperature: around 55°F

Except for the New Orleans Marathon, the SLC male average is slower than the others. The women averages are similar except for Little Rock. The Little Rock women were slightly slower than the SLC women. How much of this is due to the 4200+ ft elevation of Salt Lake City? Probably not enough data to make any conclusion. But one thing to note, 73% of the runners were from Utah so they were likely use to the high elevation. So perhaps this would minimize the effects.

Below are the detailed stats. Once again the women twenties age group outnumbered the men 481 to 372 (ratio of 1.29). Overall, the men made up 57% of the 2902 runners.

Total Runners by Times

under 3:003:00 to 4:004:00 to 5:00over 5:00
35 (1%)760 (26%)1411 (49%)696 (24%)

Male Runners by Times - Move mouse over cells to see best times

Agesunder 3:003:00 to 4:004:00 to 5:00over 5:00
preteens0 (0%)0 (0%)2 (67%)1 (33%)
teens0 (0%)12 (35%)19 (56%)3 (9%)
twenties11 (3%)135 (36%)172 (46%)54 (15%)
thirties11 (2%)199 (38%)230 (44%)83 (16%)
forties7 (2%)160 (35%)220 (48%)70 (15%)
fifties0 (0%)47 (22%)113 (52%)56 (26%)
sixties0 (0%)7 (16%)21 (48%)16 (36%)
seventies0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (17%)5 (83%)
eighties+0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (100%)
Total29 (2%)560 (34%)778 (47%)289 (17%)

Female Runners by Times - Move mouse over cells to see best times

Agesunder 3:003:00 to 4:004:00 to 5:00over 5:00
preteens0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (100%)0 (0%)
teens0 (0%)4 (14%)17 (61%)7 (25%)
twenties0 (0%)81 (17%)241 (50%)159 (33%)
thirties4 (1%)69 (18%)210 (54%)107 (27%)
forties2 (1%)42 (17%)124 (50%)80 (32%)
fifties0 (0%)4 (5%)39 (44%)45 (51%)
sixties0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (13%)7 (88%)
seventies0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)2 (100%)
Total6 (0%)200 (16%)633 (51%)407 (33%)

Average/Best Times By Age Groups (Male and Female)

AgesNumberPercentMean TimeBest Time

Average/Best Times By Male Age Groups

AgesNumberPercentMean TimeBest Time

Average/Best Times By Female Age Groups

AgesNumberPercentMean TimeBest Time

Average/Best Times By Cities

CityNumberPercentMean TimeBest Time
Bountiful, UT401%4:38:273:13:59
Draper, UT753%4:38:273:20:10
Holladay, UT211%4:25:403:29:09
Layton, UT321%4:36:352:57:06
Mesa, AZ221%4:27:233:17:29
Midvale, UT231%4:36:162:34:14
Murray, UT421%4:39:463:20:57
Ogden, UT251%4:13:422:28:31
Orem, UT662%4:31:173:15:22
Park City, UT401%4:38:063:20:26
Pleasant Grove, UT241%4:21:283:08:35
Provo, UT1134%4:25:412:37:49
Riverton, UT341%4:19:513:11:39
Salt Lake City, UT80428%4:34:262:35:14
Sandy, UT1626%4:37:132:55:50
South Jordan, UT331%4:31:573:19:53
St George, UT221%4:16:403:22:54
Taylorsville, UT241%4:38:273:28:09
West Jordan, UT692%4:29:513:07:22
West Valley City, UT211%4:53:593:27:41
Below Cutoff121042%4:27:412:15:14

Average/Best Times By State

StateNumberPercentMean TimeBest Time
Below Cutoff2167%4:14:382:15:14

All stats are based on results posted at the SLC Marathon results page.

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