Cold, clear day Sunday caps Louisiana Marathon weekend
The ninth annual Louisiana Marathon was held in Baton Rouge this past weekend.
It’s a three-day celebration centered around the main event Sunday. The Expo was held on Friday and Saturday while three races scheduled took place on Saturday – the 5K, 1/4 Marathon and the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana Kids Mile. The weekend concluded with the Louisiana Marathon and Half Marathon on Sunday under cold, windy weather to start but ended up a little warmer. This year Mother Nature was kind on both days.
The highlights of the marathon weekend was three law enforcement officers from three different states 0 Officer Danny Follett from Des Moines, Iowa, Sergeant Keegan Hughes from Blue Springs, Missouri and Detective Sean Dodge from Modesto, California – who ran in honor of fallen local Slidell Police Officer Jason Seals who died from injuries suffered in the line of duty in 2018 while escorting a funeral procession. Officer Follett ran the half marathon in full police gear alongside Seals’ sister while Officers Hughes and Dodge went the full 26.2 miles. Officer Hughes finished with a time of 5:09:54 and Officer Dodge finished with a time of 5:09:54.
A special outcome awaited a finisher of the Marathon. When 27-year-old runner Morgan Pittman crossed the finish line for the Louisiana Marathon, her boyfriend Chase Poche’ was waiting for her to ask for her hand in marriage in front of family and friends. She accepted so maybe this time next year we will have a finish-line wedding. Pittman finished 327th overall and 8th in her division with a time of 4:01:04.
Before the races on Sunday, Rev. Michael Alello – local Baton Rouge priest and Marathon runner – held mass at St Josephs Cathedral in downtown Baton Rouge just a couple of blocks from the start-finish line.
The top three finishers in the Louisiana Marathon Men’s Division were Kenney Rayner in first place at 2:28:30, second place Ryan Crandall at 2:37:04 and third place John Hitter, 2:41:47.
In the Women’s Division, the top 3 finishers for the Marathon were top finisher Samantha Yeager with a time of 2:51:31, second place Katie Moran at 3:00:42 and 3rd place Rosalie Teeuwen at 3:01:45.
The Men’s Half Marathon Division featured first place runner Christopher Capps, 1:10:01, second place Richard Bouckaert, 1:10:16, and third place Derek Yorek, 1:11:33.
The top finishers in the Women’s Half Marathon Division were top runner Jackie Range, 1:22:07, second place Ellen Benoit, 1:26:01, and third place Varinka Ensminger, 1:26:11.
In addition to Sunday’s winners, a total of 86 runners qualified for the Boston Marathon in April.
The Louisiana Marathon by the numbers had 912 total finishers – 385 Females, 527 Males – and an average time of 4:29:06.
The Louisiana Half Marathon by the numbers: 2,022 Total Finishers – 1,206 Females, 816 Males – and the average time at 2:23:13.
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Randy Pistorius is a lifelong resident of South Louisiana and is currently working in the communications field in the Baton Rouge Metropolitian Area. Randy’s start in journalism came while still in high school at De La Salle in New Orleans and that carried with him to Southeastern Louisiana University where he wrote for the Lions Roar and also worked in…