Interview Focus on a race

9 questions to discover a race : The Gusher Marathon

Richard James the co-founder of Sports Society for American Health and the race director for The Gusher Marathon. Having competed in bicycle races, triathlons, speed skating races, and running events, he enjoys this opportunity to be behind the scenes to witness others achieving personal goals. As the author of the children’s educational/ animated series, Adventures of the Elements, The Gusher Marathon allows him to continue to raise awareness of children’s health and education issues.

Hello, on May 1st 2010, you’ll be organizing the Gusher Marathon. Can you tell us where it is located?

The Gusher Marathon, Half Marathon & 5K is located in Beaumont, Texas in the United States. Beaumont is approximately 80 miles east of Houston, TX and about 30 miles west of Louisiana in-land from the Gulf of Mexico.


This will be the inaugural edition of the race. What was the purpose in creating the event?

Our nonprofit organization, Sports Society for American Health, has hosted triathlons, bicycle races, and speed skating races since 2000. With the tremendous success of the Chevron Houston Marathon and the fact that there has never been a marathon in Beaumont, we feel the demand for a marathon is high. The event also allows us to raise awareness for the fight against obesity.

Our organization hosts events to primarily benefit children’s health and education. Childhood obesity as well as adult obesity has become an enormous crisis. This is an opportunity to confront that issue and to encourage more people to adopt a healthy, active lifestyle such as running provides.

What kind of route have you set up for the runners? How would you describe it?

This is a flat, close to sea-level route. The course circles Lamar University and then proceeds through downtown Beaumont passing several museums and other local attractions. There are no hills in Beaumont. Therefore, the only climb is an underpass. This is a fast road course along paved city streets.

Spindletop Museum

Spindletop museum, Beaumont TX
Credit : roy.luck

How many runners do you expect on Saturday morning? What type of runners do you plan to attract?

Being that this is the inaugural year for this event, we are not sure how many runners will be present. However, based on our history of hosting triathlons and bicycle races, we anticipate as many as 5,000 runners.

Currently, we have runners from Olympic marathon trial qualifiers to first-timers who have indicated that they will run. Therefore, all levels of runners will be there. In fact, if someone can walk three miles, they can at least complete the 5K distance. We also have corporate and school relay teams divisions.

Do you organize other races during the Week-End? If so, on what distances?

This is our first running event. However, we have organized professionally sanctioned triathlons, bicycle races, and speed skating races.

At that time of the year, what kind of weather can we expect?

Typically, the weather is sunny with an average temperature of 72 degrees Fahrenheit. If we have a cold front, which happens at that time, the average temperature will be in the 60’s.

Have you planned festivities around the marathon?

There will be live music, food, and vendors at the marathon. We may coordinate with another event that is occurring on the same weekend in Beaumont. These details will be provided on the website as they develop.

The marathon finished, what advice would you give a runner who has never been to Beaumont before? A good restaurant, a fancy sightseeing?

There is a variety of good food and some sightseeing. Visit our website ( and click on the About Beaumont Tab. From there you can follow links to acquire a wealth of information on Beaumont.

In a single sentence, what would you tell the readers of ahotu Marathons to make them register for the The Gusher Marathon?

The Gusher Marathon course offers the perfect conditions for setting a personal record or for attempting a first marathon, half marathon or 5K. Rush the Gush!

Thank you Richard
For more information

Exygon and Baptist Hospitals Gusher Marathon, Half Marathon & 5K