Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Simone Wins Marathon Bahamas 2011

Simone from Germany Wins Marathon Bahamas 2011

The top female and male finishers at Marathon Bahamas 2011 were from Germany and the USA respectively, but to everyone’s surprise the marathon crown is now held by a female after Simone Maissenbacher, 34, took full advantage and out classed the rest of the field after defending champion Delroy Booth from Grand Bahama dropped out with a cramp at Mile 17, and second favorite Sidney Collie from New Providence was disqualified after taking a wrong turn on the course.

Maissenbacher outclassed the rest of the field and crossed the line in 3:02:39, followed by American Joel Pettit in 3:23:19. 

The top Bahamian male in the full marathon was Randy Thurston who finished in 3:35.41 but he too was beaten by a female namely Susan Mauire who finished in 3:29:50.  She also took the top position in the female masters division.  The top finisher in the male masters division was David Holmen in 3:23:33.

In the half marathon Bresser Carston from Germany won in 1:16:39, followed by Bahamian O’Neil Williams in 1:20:05, and Jason Williams third in 1:24:06.

The top female in the half marathon was Kim Pawelek from the USA who finished 5th overall in 1:26:59.    The top master male in the half marathon was 40 year old Tim Smit who finished 6th overall crossing the line in 1:28:04.  The top female master was 44 year old Laura Dimarino in 1:35.42 for 14th overall.

There was a dispute over the top relay finishers after a discrepancy over relay legs on the various teams running the proper distances. The T-Bird Flyers, The Royal Bahamas Defense Force, Star Trackers and CR Walker were among the top relay teams that included UBS Bank, Ranfurly Home, and Royal Fidelity Bank among the others.    

The marathon started at scenic Junkanoo Beach at 6am with more than 600 runners on the starting line. 

After the victory Maissenbacher said it was a difficult run because she ran most of the course alone. She plans to compete in a few more marathons in Germany and in the USA this year before returning to The Bahamas to defend her title in 2012.  It is her first trip to The Bahamas.

Pettit who came to The Bahamas from Los Angeles, California for his wedding on Saturday said the course was a bit surprising. “The course wasn’t bad.  There were a couple of bridges in the beginning that were kind of a surprise, and towards the middle of the course near the turn around there were a couple more hills, but the competition was great. I saw the pace makers ahead of me the whole time and I knew I couldn’t let up so I went and got those guys.”

Chairman of the marathon Franklyn Wilson got very good reviews from the participants as they came across the finish line. “Many of the runners I talked to used the word awesome.  I’m just thankful for the many people in this country who did so much to make it successful,” said Wilson.

He noted that hosting this second edition of Marathon Bahamas was a bit more challenging than the first one in 2010 because instead of just hosting the marathon they staged an entire weekend of events leading up to the big race on Sunday.

He explained, “We started on Thursday with a visit to Government House, continued on Friday with the scientific health round table and seminar on cancer. This year we added the component of health particularly breast cancer trying to understand why 300 to 400 women in The Bahamas are diagnosed and die from cancer every year at such a young age.  It allowed us to involve the Susan G. Komen Foundation Race for the Cure on Saturday morning in addition to the fitness expo at the Crystal Palace on Saturday afternoon.”

Wilson was also proud of the fact that local musicians were able to get involved particularly in the production of a theme song for Marathon Bahamas.

He said his team will go right back to the drawing board to begin planning for Marathon Bahamas 2012.  “When we were asked that question last year I could not have foreseen the success we have had this year, this big, this strong, a whole weekend of successful events attracting more than 2,500 people that filled hotel rooms,” said Wilson.

He was also proud of the fact that runners came from all parts of the world including Nigeria, Canada, Germany, the Caribbean, and from a number of States in the USA.

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