Whether you spent months training and ran this year’s Pittsburgh Marathon or you took it all in as a spectator (and maybe brought along a great homemade sign), here are some fun facts about Pittsburgh’s two days of road-running festivities:
A SEASONED COMPETITOR AND A NOVICE: In the women’s race, American runner Sydney Devore won in 2 hours, 32 minutes, 39 seconds. Though she was a cross country runner in college, 26-year-old Devore was actually running her first marathon. Fikadu Girma Teferi of Ethiopia won the men’s race in 2 hours, 13 minutes and 47 seconds, after coming in third last year. He has also run the New York Marathon. (Their competition? Along with 35,000 American runners, competitors came from 24 other countries including the islands of Palau and Curacao.)
THE KIDS ARE GAINING ON US: At this year’s UPMC Health Plan/UPMC Sports Medicine Pittsburgh 5K Run, the men’s race winner was Pittsburgher Sean Battis, 36, who clocked in at 16 minutes, 54 seconds. The second place winner in the men’s race was a teenager: 16-year-old McKeesport resident Lukas Dunaway, who crossed the finish line after just 17 minutes, 10 seconds.
NEXT STOP, TOKYO? That was fast: This win immediately qualifies novice marathoner Devore for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials.
THE RACES BEFORE THE RACE: This year’s Saturday race events drew a record number of participants — more than 15,000. Along with the 5K run mentioned above, that lineup of events included the Toyota Pittsburgh Kids Marathon, Sheetz Pittsburgh Toddler Trot (with participants as young as nine months) and Rachael Ray Nutrish Pittsburgh Pet Walk. Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver and beloved rookie JuJu Smith-Schuster cheered on runners at the Kids Marathon and his french bulldog Boujee led the crowd in the Pet Walk — which included three cats along with a group of dogs.
All that led up to Sunday’s big race, which was the 10th annual DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon.
ALMOST LOCAL: Though she’s from sunny Lakeland, Florida, Devore’s dad is from the nearby town of Chester, West Virginia. So she had a crowd of relatives cheering her on as she raced under Pittsburgh’s overcast skies yesterday.