Boit, Dunne win accompanying half marathon.
ST. LOUIS — For the thousands of spectators lining the downtown course of the inaugural Solutia Rock ‘n’ Roll St. Louis Marathon & ½ Marathon benefiting TASK, Sunday morning’s race meant party. For the first time in the city’s history, a running event was transformed into an entertainment extravaganza.
More than 40 local bands played on 26 stages, curbside crowds waved personalized signs, local high school cheerleading squads chanted and relatives applauded their athletes who started a 26.2 or 13.1-mile voyage just after sunrise.
“Today was awesome,” said Kirkwood-resident Amy Landes, who finished in second place in the women’s marathon. “It was such a great course with lots of crowd support, running through neat little neighborhoods. The weather was absolutely perfect, I wasn’t sure how much I’d be into the Rock ‘n’ Roll atmosphere, but it’s amazing how the bands can pick you up when you’re out there.”
Running in ideal, mid 60-degree temperatures, Cory Ferguson of Indianapolis, Ind., and Stephanie Hill Stephanie Hill of Pevely, Mo., took home marathon victories. Ferguson, running his third career marathon, broke the tape in 2 hours, 29 minutes and 22 seconds.
“It was a great race, with a challenging course. At mile 14, I was dragging a little and if it wasn’t for those bands and cheerleaders encouraging me along the route, I’m not sure if I would have finished,” said Ferguson. “Winning this marathon is the greatest accomplishment of my running career.”
Hill crossed the finish line in 2 hours, 58 minutes and 15 seconds. Her time was more than seven minutes ahead of Landes, who finished in 3:05:51.
Former University of Arkansas all-American Josphat Boit of Kenya won the half-marathon in 1:08:28. Twenty-eight-year-old Amanda Dunne of Columbia, Mo., won the women’s race in 1:20:08.
Conditions on the scenic St. Louis course were ideal for marathon running on a partly cloudy day with almost no wind. A record number of 21,250 people registered for the event, attracting entrants from all 50 states and 25 countries.
Through the race, Solutia raised $1.2 million for Team Activities for Special Kids, a nonprofit organization that provides accessible sports for St. Louis children with special needs.
The second annual Solutia Rock ‘n’ Roll St. Louis Marathon & ½ Marathon is set for Sunday, October 21, 2012.
Results – Solutia Rock ‘n’ Roll St. Louis Marathon & ½ Marathon
Marathon – Male
1. Cory Ferguson, 30, Indianapolis, IN, 2:29:22, $1,000
2. Arturs Bareikis, 25, Oak Forest, IL, 2:29:24, $500
3. Eric Wallor, 28, Palatine, IL, 2:29:41
Marathon – Female
1. Stephanie Hill, 28, Pevely, MO, 2:58:15, $1,000
2. Amy Landes, 39, Kirkwood, MO, 3:05:51, $500
3. Lauren Perlmutter, 21, Saint Louis, MO, 3:08:43, $250
Half-marathon – Male
1. Josphat Boit, 27, Kenya, 1:08:28, $1,000
2. Benson Chesang, 29, Lawrence, KS, 1:08:51, $500
3. Matthew Lawder, 22, Manchester, MO, 1:10:07, $250
Half-marathon – Female
1. Amanda Dunne, 28, Columbia, MO, 1:20:09, $1,000
2. Jessica Koster, 23, Saint Louis, MO, 1:21:46, $500
3. Juli Koenegstein, 24, Stillwater, OK, 1:22:09, $250