NEWPORT BEACH & COSTA MESA, Calif. – With tributes to the Boston Marathon in abundance and emotions running high, 23-year-old Kevin Havel of Laguna Niguel won today’s OC Marathon in 2:23:34, more than two minutes faster than runner-up Mohamed Fadil (2:25:47) of Albuquerque, NM. Kimberly O’Donnell, age 23 of Santa Cruz, dominated the women’s race finishing with a time of 2:47:13 compared to second place Leng Klukken of Huntington Beach (3:09:51). All three of today’s divisions (marathon, half marathon and 5K) began with a moment of silence commemorating Boston.
The 26.2 mile course began at Fashion Island in Newport Beach under cover of darkness and ended at the OC Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa. Security measures were enhanced for today’s races with public safety officials from all jurisdictional agencies and private security at the start, finish and on the course. Members of the SWAT Team and Bomb Squad were present along with mounted officers from the Orange County Sherriff’s Department. No incidents were reported.
Californians led the top finishers in the half marathon, with 28 year-old Jimmy Grabow of Whittier winning the men’s race in a time of 1:07:57 followed by Ryan Cosens, age 23, of Costa Mesa taking second in 1:09:39. Twenty-nine year-old Liz Camy of Camarillo was victorious in the women’s division in a time of 1:18:49 followed by 33 year-old Jenni Johnson of Tustin in 1:20:39.
In addition to the moments of silence, logos for the Boston Marathon and “The One Fund” were visible at the start and finish lines. Several running clubs, groups, families and individuals honored the victims by wearing “Runners for Boston”, “Boston Finisher”, “Boston Strong”, “Boston Red Sox” and similar themed T-Shirts and headwear. Others carried signs and banners that read “For Boston”.
“We had an amazing race weekend,” said Gary Kutscher, Race Director. “From record fields in the full and half marathons to the incredible Kids Run the OC which continues its positive growth, a heartfelt thank you goes out to everyone who made it happen, not the least of which are our sponsors, charities and volunteers.”
The OC Marathon is considered as one of the best full and half marathon courses in the state due to its diverse terrain, changing vistas and majestic ocean views. It traverses the cities of Newport Beach, Costa Mesa, Irvine and Santa Ana and boasts a blend of chic coastal scenery, tranquil nature and sophisticated arts and shopping.
The Ninth Annual OC Marathon weekend was held May 4 and 5, 2013. More than 20,000 runners participated in the marathon, half marathon, OC Wahoo’s 5K and Kids Run the OC. Additionally, thousands of spectators lined the course and the start line in front of the Newport Beach Marriott and finish line at OC Fair and Event Center, while an additional 30,000 attended the two-day Allergan Health & Fitness Expo which showcases national brands and state of the art footwear and training technology. More information is available at www.ocmarathon.com.