Cheaters: Running Their Amazing Race!

Rosie Ruiz, the first globally publicized marathon cheater

Despite the hostility and abomination the majority of runners feel about runners who cheat during marathons, this shameful act is still prevalent that bring with them an honorary lifetime of curse and contempt. Running–or running a marathon is supposed to be a pure, honest sport where patience, sacrifice, courage, solitude, victory and defeat are components of what this sport is about–an honest assessment of oneself.

Yet, this noblest of sports is robbed of its purity when some cheapie runners succumb to temptation and flaunt it without shame. I was a bit sad when i heard that last Sunday’s Milo Marathon eliminations was marred by a few cheaters, making this supposed most prestigious local marathon another breeding ground for these pests to lay their eggs on. Unbelievable that many of these runners were brazen enough to cross the finish line when they were seen being dropped-off at a point near the finish from a vehicle as they sheepishly continued their run.

Too, even the BDM 102km Ultrarun which is supposed to be the ultimate distance run here was not spared by this cheats. All the tricks in the books have been employed and here are some of the methods used by these charlatans:

1.  Taking a lift from a vehicle (usually their own support vehicle) when no one is watching to take them nearer the finish.

2.  Riding in a bus, taxi, jeepney or other public transportation after taking off their race bib nos. or putting on another shirt to conceal it and getting off near the finish, replacing their bibs and continuing their run.

3.  Taking short-cuts, applying trick no. 2, pretending to jog by their lonesome (oblivious to their surroundings) then joining the race again after the short-cut has been made.

4.  Stepping off the course, hiding in a building or gas station or making a stop-over at a fastfood joint to eat while killing time to re-join when runners have come back from the turn-around point.

5.  Stopping at a designated place then taking off their official bib or timing chip and giving it to a faster runner to officially record their progress along the course.

6.  Have another impostor run on your behalf or make him run the first 42k and hand back the identification back to you so you could finish the last 195 meters!

7.  Scanning an original race bib and making a counterfeit bib out of it with exact size, text and color giving the semblance that you are officially registered and therefore running the race legally! (I’ve witnessed this personally being fabricated on a Photocopy shop near POEA. The race was for a Runrio event!)

These are some of the scam i have witnessed personally and heard from co-runners and if you have other more to add, please do so. Race Directors should have the option of either exposing these cheats publicly if they are confident that cheating has occured or informing them privately that they are being banned from their future races.

Distance running and bus riding do not mix—unless you are competing in the “Amazing Race”!

28 responses to “Cheaters: Running Their Amazing Race!

  1. I personally witnessed #1 at Milo last Sunday. The runners (6 or 7) got out of a green L-300 van and continued their run. They were all wearing orange uniform singlets with some form of logo.

    I will comb through the 42k results, pick out the ones with dubious data, publish their names in my blog, and challenge them to respond/explain.

    Dapat sa mga yan, patakbuhin sa finals with elites as pacers, and if they can’t duplicate their performance during the elims, barilin sa Luneta!

    • Wow Atty Jules, that’s a WHOLE team of charlatans! Tsk,tsk…Right you are, they should be exposed! I wonder what team logo they were using on their singlets? It should reflect on the company/product they were trying to advertise then.

  2. tsk tsk tsk… in running and any other endeavor (like studying, etc), its always better to repeat, than to cheat!

    have you seen the results. many skipped the last and even the 2nd to the last split! shameful!

    • I saw the list, Jet! Pretty obvious that some tried to short-change the whole process and it reflected, big time!

  3. Pingback: Dorando Pietri & Derek Redmond « hurdler49: Hurdling the Real World.

  4. wow! Got me a bit lost for words there.

    I want to say unbelievable but it happens. My only question is, how can they announce to their family, friends or those they know that they finished the race/ ran the actual distance without guilt creeping up?

    Was actually wondering how it can be possible for some runners to not have split times….

    • That puzzles me too, Maridol. Amazing how people can sink as low if given the chance. Some were identified and their times won’t lie!

  5. yes sir rene, that running club with the orange singlets. i personally saw one making a shortcut near sofitel/atang dela rama. hindi na nahiya. tsk tsk…

    • Hi Darryl. Do you remember the name of the running club? I’m sure not many of them will have the gall to wear those orange singlets in a race again.

  6. isa diyan, madalas tuwing milo elims bumibilis. mantakin mo 1st 26k nasa 6 minutes plus ang pace tapos biglang next 11k , bumulusok sa 3:44 ang pace. hanep ano? nahagip na lang sana ng bus sa baclaran

  7. Hi Rene, you can see those runners with orange singlets every sunday in UP, kilala mo yung mga yun they’re mostly bald due to their profession….and they run in big groups.

    • Hi Chito. Yes, kilala ko na sila. They start from Quezon Memorial Circle and proceed to UP for their Sunday runs. Some in my group know their team leaders so we shall see.

  8. Hi Rene. Good to read your blog again and good post. I remember the Rosie Ruiz situation well as I was back in Boston on vacation when this happened. Cheating has no place in running and for that matter all of sports. Whether it’s cutting courses or drug use, not fair to those who ran the entire distance. I’ve seen it up front, particularly in the Bay To Breakers race that I’ve run in for 30 years. They now have chip timing that has eliminated most of the cheaters.

    My blog is now Take care and I hope to see and meet you this November.


    • Hi Wayne! Nice to hear from you again! Sad that this issue (cheating) has become the “flavor of the month” although it may have been done but not given so much thought in past marathons here. Looking forward to your November visit.:-)

  9. i noticed these 3 runners had a split times of 15k-1:45:54, 26k – 3:15:28, 37k – 3:19:48, and if you notice it only took them 4mins to run the next 11km!!! and i look at their pictures in photovendo and the sad part was matatanda na sila, but wala pa silang pinagkatadaan. and huling huli talaga dahil dun sa pictures nila naglalakad. grabe!!!!

    • Hi Ronnie. I’m very surprised myself about their split times that i suspect David Copperfield must have been an accomplice to all these! :-))

      Thanks for dropping by.

  10. Unfortunately it does not only occur in Milo. It happens in almost every marathon. I remember people getting busted at the NY City marathon by taking the subway or taking a cab. Why they do do it? Who knows. Quite frankly thats on them for cheating only themselves.

    • Hi Kenneth. You’re right and the humiliation it brings in being caught does not preclude these people from doing it all the same. What a shame.

      Thanks for dropping by!

  11. Hi Sir,

    I posted the photos of these cheats in my blog []. I made a comment that runners with unbelievable and dubious split times must submit their records to Guinness World Record or share their secrets with Mindfreak.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s