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2018 Austin Marathon Showcases Revamped Marathon Course to the World

Allison Macsas qualifies for 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials with 2:43:11 on revamped marathon course

The Austin Marathon unveiled the revamped marathon course for marathoners and the entire world on Sunday, February 18th, showcasing the city of Austin throughout the entire FloTrack livestream. More than 15,000 participants registered for the Austin Marathon, half marathon, and 5K, coming to Austin from all 50 states and 35 countries. Tens of thousands of spectators lined the Austin streets cheering on runners, waving hilarious signs, and providing endless energy. The highlight of the day featured Allison Macsas qualifying for the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials on the revamped marathon course, finishing in 2:43:11, in front of family and friends.

Allison Macsas, 2018 Austin Marathon female champion (2:43:11)

“Winning the Austin Marathon for the second time was even more magical than the first,” said Macsas. “The amount of hometown support coupled with a deeper field and cool weather helped me feel stronger than I had thought possible, and ended with an OTQ which was a huge surprise! The entire event was incredibly well-executed and I can’t think of a more rewarding place to win a marathon than here in Austin.”

FloTrack’s live coverage followed the men’s and women’s elite fields for the marathon and half marathon. The forecasted rain stayed away and start time temperatures hovered in the low 50s. Drizzle was on and off and low-hanging clouds helped keep race temperatures ideal for great times and hundreds of PRs. Aid stations hydrated runners with nuun performance, Clif Bar handed out Clif Shots at two Clif Zones on course, and runners celebrated with friends and family in the Oskar Blues beer garden at the finish line festival.

Syracuse alumnus Joey Whelan (2:21:37) crossed the finish line first, besting 2017 Austin Marathon champion Joe Thorne’s time of 2:32:05. Craig Leon (2:23:24) and Daniel Bishop (2:26:27) rounded out the men’s marathon field, respectively. The male half marathoners finishing in the top three consisted of Patrick Smyth (1:04:16), Ryan Root (1:08:51), Luke Humphrey (1:08:54).

Joey Whelan, 2018 Austin Marathon male champion (2:21:37)

I kept it simple and tried to keep an even pace while working the hills on the course. I make ranch roads in the Texas Hill Country for a living so I do a lot of hill training,” said Whelan, who also won the 2018 3M Half Marathon (1:09:06). “It was great to have people yelling my name on the course; I love the Austin running community!”

Austinite Allison Macsas (2:43:11) shaved more than five minutes off her 2017 winning time.  Ashley Paulson (2:46:11) and D’Ann Arthur (2:49:37) finished second and third respectively. The top three female half marathon finishers were Hillary Montgomery (1:16:15), Allison Mendez-Cleaver (1:16:19), and Jocelyn Todd (1:17:19).

Participants can see their results on the Austin Marathon website and continue to share their memorable experiences on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Runners can expect their FinisherPix race day photos to be ready in 24-48 hours after the race.

The Austin Marathon would like to thank the volunteers, spectators, and participants who made the race so special. They would also like to thank the City of Austin, Austin Police Department, Department of Public Safety, CapMetro, Travis County EMS, Under Armour, H-E-B, Under Armour, Clif Bar, nuun, Dole, Medicine in Motion, Oskar Blues Brewery, Ben Phillips – Engel & Völkers Austin, Qualcomm, SPIbelt, ALVIES, FloTrack, Austin Sports Commission, FitRankings, Keep Austin Beautiful, Goodwill Central Texas, and Austin Massage Company.

2018 Austin Marathon Set to Debut New Marathon Course

High Five Events is ready to showcase the revamped Austin Marathon® course. The race will begin at 7 a.m., feature a highly-competitive elite field, and be livestreamed by FloSports so spectators and loved ones around the globe can watch. Runners from all 50 states and 34 countries will run the 27th annual Austin Marathon on Sunday, Feb. 18th.

“The new Austin Marathon course will present different challenges and require a different strategy than the old course,” said Allison Macsas, 2017 Austin Marathon female champion. “I’m really looking forward to racing through a new mix of neighborhoods and more of the awesome hometown support that helped get me to the win last year!”

The new Austin Marathon course was designed to provide a better participant and spectator experience and allow enhanced traffic flow along the new marathon course, while still finishing with the picturesque Texas State Capitol as every runner’s backdrop. The first half of the Austin Marathon will remain unchanged. After Mile 12, half marathoners will head south to the finish line while marathoners continue east before turning north and running on Guadalupe St. through the heart of the University of Texas campus. The new marathon course will highlight Austin attractions like the University of Texas Tower and historic Hyde Park neighborhood, while taking marathoners on a tour of East Austin’s restaurants, murals, and landmarks.

new marathon courseFloSports, a sports media based in Austin, Texas, will highlight the Austin Marathon and Half Marathon’s Elite Athlete Program by following the men’s and women’s elite leaders throughout the race. They will also have a camera capturing finishers as they cross the finish line. In addition to being available to watch online for free, the feed will be displayed on the finish line Jumbotrons.

“Excitement has been building around the new Austin Marathon course and we’re ready to host thousands of runners from around the world during race weekend,” said Stacy Keese, co-owner of High Five Events. “With the addition of the Manzano Mile we’ve expanded race weekend to further showcase the city of Austin as a true running destination.”

The following is a sample of the athletes in the Elite Field competing for the $20,000 prize purse: Allison Macsas (2016 Olympic Marathon Trials Qualifier), Craig Leon (2016 Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier), David Fuentes (2016 Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier), Becki Spellman (3-time Olympic Trials Marathon qualifier, 2008, 2012, 2016), Luke Humphrey (3-time Olympic Trials Marathon qualifier, 2008, 2012, 2016), Patrick Smyth (8th place 2016 Olympic Trials – 2:15:26), Allison Mendez-Cleaver (2016 Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier), Amanda Scott (2-time Olympic Trials Marathon qualifier, 2012, 2016), Hillary Montgomery (2016 Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier).

The Austin Marathon will celebrate its 27th year running in the capital of Texas on February 18, 2018. Austin’s flagship running event annually attracts runners from all 50 states and 34 countries around the world. Having start and finish locations just a few blocks apart, being within walking distance of many downtown hotels and restaurants, and finishing in front of the picturesque Texas State Capitol makes the Austin Marathon the perfect running weekend destination. Participants can register for the marathon, half marathon, or 5K.

Austin Marathon Announces Fourth Round of Accepted Elite Runners

High Five Events introduces the fourth round of accepted athletes for the 2018 Austin Marathon®. Runners who do not qualify for the Elite Athlete Program are still invited to run in the Elite Field. The Elite Athlete Program’s focus is to provide a clean and competitive environment, discover emerging talent, and help the existing talent pool reach Olympic standards. The Program’s Year Two prize purse totals $20,000, with $15,000 for the marathon and $5,000 for the half marathon.

The fourth round of 2018 marathoners include:

fourth round

Becki Spellman, 2008, 2012, 2016 Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier.

  • Ruairi Moynihan – Elite Field (ran 2:39:38 at 2017 Grandma’s Marathon)
  • Jamie Stroffolino – Elite Field (ran 2:37:38 at 2017 NYC Marathon)
  • Mollie Turner – Elite Field (7th place 2017 Hartford Marathon – 2:53:32)
  • Cecile Daurat-Thompson – Elite Field (ran 2:59:50 at 2016 Philadelphia Marathon)

The fourth round of 2018 half marathoners include:

  • Becki Spellman – Elite Athlete Program (2008, 2012, 2016 Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier)
  • Ryan Root – Elite Athlete Program (5th place 2017 Indianapolis Marathon – 2:19:51)
  • Jocelyn Todd – Elite Athlete Program (ran 2:48:23 at 2017 Chicago Marathon)
  • Gabe Gonzalez – Elite Athlete Program (6th place at 2016 Big Sur Half Marathon)
  • Fernanda Bau – Elite Field (ran 1:28:25 at 2017 Austin Half Marathon)
  • Karen Bertasso – Elite Field (ran 2:49:08 at 2017 Berlin Marathon)
  • Cole Toepfer – Elite Field (ran 1:11:30 at 2016 Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon)
  • Randi Burnett – Elite Field (ran 2:53 at 2017 NYC Marathon)
  • Sarah Lancaster – Elite Field (ran 1:25:32 at 2016 Austin Half Marathon)
  • Nicholas Spector – Elite Field (3rd place at 2017 OC Half Marathon – 1:09:19)

“After running my first marathon in Austin 2008 and qualifying for the Olympic Trials, this race has a special place in my heart,” said Spellman. “I’m very excited to be back in Austin this February; I can’t wait to race!”

Read about the first, second, and third rounds of accepted elite runners. Including today’s announcement, the marathon has accepted a total of eight runners into the Elite Athlete Program and 15 have been invited to participate in the Elite Field. The half marathon has accepted eight runners into the Elite Athlete Program and 14 have been invited to participate in the Elite Field. Applications are arriving daily and more than 100 have already been submitted. The fifth round of athletes will be announced next week. Applications are still being accepted and elite runners can apply on the Austin Marathon’s website. Athletes that meet the program’s standards and are accepted will be given one comp entry to the 2018 Austin Marathon or half marathon, reimbursement eligibility, and standards bonuses.