The Marathon Project 2020

The races were good. Well the men's in particular as the women were strung out. Coverage so so because they failed to give decent updates on pace/place in the second half of the race. Ian Butler, Wow! And of course big breakouts for Hehir and Droddy.
I really enjoyed the races and coverage. I am generally reluctant to fork over money to USATF yet am ultimately glad I did, I found it well worth the price. While maybe not quite up to Japan level where they show finish time projection for runners on screen or a pace for the current leaders, they did show the two races simultaneously via split screen and even tri-split screen to show other runners and packs along with the leaders. There were also 5K splits given on the screen that went deep into the pack. The commentary was really good from Swangard and Linden, but then I prefer subdued and insightful over shrill and vapid like we normally get from network coverage. Fantastic production value, far better than any televised network coverage of a US marathon that I've ever seen/endured. Also: no commercials! It was 100% race coverage start to finish. They had compelling storylines: Sara Hall swinging for the fences, Kellyn Taylor charging right along with her, the men's pack sticking to the sub-2:09 pacers until it strung out and became a head-to-head battle. It was certainly compelling enough for me to keep the entire focus on competition without breaking away to some manufactured or tangentially relevant dramatic story.

Yeah, great to see local guys Ian Butler with the huge breakthrough and Noah Droddy with some redemption for missed opportunity earlier in the year. Marty Hehir is an amazing story along with Keira D'Amato. And even outside the coverage so many others came away with massive PRs, to include everyone (I believe) who competed from local elite group Roots Running Project. I hope there's a way to make this event a fixture on the calendar going forward, sort of a Fukuoka for US/North American runners.