Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Best Frequent Marathoners, 2014

Since 2009, Dave Trautman, a professor of Mathematics and Computer Science at The Citadel, has published lists of the “Best Frequent Marathoners” for each year.  It’s an effort to identify “those runners who a) run a lot of marathons, and b) do so reasonably well.”

Dr. Trautman has created a ranking system based on the cumulative time by which runners have beaten the median times for their gender in the various marathons they’ve run in a particular year.  He compiles separate lists for the top women and men.  Here’s a link to the lists for 2014.

I ranked fifth among the men on this year’s list.  It was the fourth straight year that I’ve been on this list.  That’s not too surprising, since this has become my niche in recent years.  I run a lot of marathons, and I do so reasonably well.  I’ve never been as fast as elite athletes.  Likewise, while I run a lot of marathons, I don’t run nearly as many as Larry Macon, Jim Simpson, or any of the other runners who have done 100 or more marathons in a single year.  I do, however, run somewhat faster than average times, despite racing frequently.

It’s worth noting that these rankings don’t include ultramarathons and they also don’t include races outside of the United States.  The data used primary comes from marathonguide.com, so races not listed there might not be included in the rankings.

I know several of the other runners on these lists.  I see them at various races throughout the year.  Some, like Gary Krugger and Chuck Engle, are WAY faster than I am.  Others, like Vincent Ma, race way more often than I do.

I don’t know how long my name will keep showing up on these lists.  I’m not getting any younger, and these lists don’t take age into account.  For what it’s worth, I had the highest score among men older than 50.

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