Google+ Running in Cork, Ireland: Men winning womens races...again

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Men winning womens races...again

In the USA, there seems to be an ongoing issue with some men taking part in womens races. While there is no problem with men running slowly in costumes and raising money for charities, some have decided to go all out and end up winning.

Back in 2009, this happened in the Disney Princess Half-Marathon in Florida when Jonathan Mederos won the race. Fast forward to 2011 and it seems that it has happened again with Ken Brooks from Michigan winning the race.

The start was staggered--the best women had an 8-minute advantage by the time Brooks jumped off the line. According to Brooks, a number of women talked trash as he sped past. "Some of them were profane, but other ones would make remarks like, 'That's no princess …'" he says.

Jacksonville, Fla., resident Jennifer Hanley-Pinto, 33, was leading the race when Brooks passed her at mile 12. "I am pretty sure I called him a tool," she says. She thought to herself, "Really? You're going to take the lead in the last mile of the Princess Half Marathon?" Hanley-Pinto wound up second in 1:22.01, 25 seconds ahead of the women's runner-up, Caitlin Latimer. Two more women crossed the line before the next male finisher.

Ken 'Tool' Brooks finishing to an eerie silence

Hanley-Pinto had traveled to Orlando with her triathlon training partners for a girls' weekend. They went for an 80-mile bike ride on Saturday, raced the half Sunday morning, and then spent the afternoon shopping. She had no problem with Brooks being out there, but "a guy winning an all-girls race, that is poor judgment in my opinion" she says.

It's not the first time this has happened to her. "I ran the first Princess Half [in 2009] and I was leading in that race until a guy [Jonathon Mederos] passed me in mile 3," says Hanley-Pinto, who wound up sixth overall, fifth among women. "He won that race too."

Brooks' 1:14:09 individual victory and PR received little fanfare. "My friends who were at the finish line said it was like hearing crickets," Hanley-Pinto said. "When he crossed the line he got nothing."


Donal23 said...

Tool being the operative word. These guys need to get a life and try winning mens races. Great feature though!

Anonymous said...

i think it's utterly wrong and ridiculous for me to interfere in women's only races. If men want to do a decent thing like raise cash for charity and run in a female outfit then more power to them but i think they should be given clear instructions on their participation int he race.
1. they should start at the back of the group
2. they should not race the event - if they want a race there are plenty available
3. they should avoid finishing in the top 50 or even running in the top 50 throughout the race as this only dilutes the efforts of female competitors and their acheivement - as was quite noticeable at the cork mini marathon.

i know a lot of the lads are doing it for the craic but you have to be fair to the female athletes who can easily feel their genuine effort is undermined or overshadowed by being raced by males in fancy dress.

maybe there should be a delayed start for all male/charity/fancy dress runners - to avoid such interference

anyway just my opinion,

Anonymous said...

Based on your latest feature regarding IAAF regulations changing for world records. What would happen if a WR was set in a race of this nature and there were male athletes in there who were not meant to be. Would the WR be null and void due to a male athlete gaining access to the course. I agree with earlier post, plenty of other races to run where money can be raised if that is the reason.

Anonymous said...

considering women were for many years banned in taking part in long distance running events like the marathon it's bang out of order for some guy to win the disney princess half marathon. even saying it cracks me up!!!! could you imagine a guy putting that down as a list of wins!!!