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2801 Views 3 Replies Latest reply: Jul 31, 2009 2:07 PM by lenzlaw
Noel90298 Amateur 13 posts since
Apr 4, 2009
Currently Being Moderated

Jul 31, 2009 11:22 AM

Beating the Bridge


This will be the first marathon for my me and my wife.  Our training is progressing well but we started way out of shape.  We fear she may not be able to be at the 14:00 pace at the 20 mile mark to beat the bridge.  That brings up some questions...



Is the 14:00 pace figured from when the last person crosses the start line or when the race begins?



Does the bridge close right on time or is this a goal to shoot for with some wiggle room?



Would you recommend someone running even if they knew they could only keep a 14:30 to 14:45 pace?



  • Immer treu We're Not Worthy 5,202 posts since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Jul 31, 2009 11:31 AM (in response to Noel90298)
    Re: Beating the Bridge

    There usually will be time for anyone keeping 14 minute pace from the time the last starter crosses the line.  There is almost always a little slack, but if one were last across the start and averaging 14:45 on course, disappointment may well await.

  • zoom1 Legend 288 posts since
    Jan 22, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Jul 31, 2009 1:05 PM (in response to Noel90298)
    Re: Beating the Bridge

    The bridge clock starts when the last person crosses the starting line.  The bridge pace is not a hard drop dead pace.  If you are near there, they will let you by.  HOWEVER ... and this only happened last year .... there were a bit of confusion and they cut folks off early.  They told a few to take a shortcut while others were prevented from crossing the bridge.  The bottom line is if you are straddling the bridge cutoff time, there is little room for error.  A bonk or some other unexpected situations (i.e., extra bathroom breaks, cramps, etc) may cause you to miss that cutoff.


    If you are afraid that you or your wife may not make it, consider some of the other more walker/slower runner marathons.  The Baltimore marathon is a bit more friendly to the back of the packers.   I believed that they allow folks in the 7-8 hour range to finish without issues.


    When you say that you have a pace of 14:30-14:45, do you mean that's the pace that you or your wife keep normally on your runs so far ?  What do you base your marathon pace on ? Keep in mind that after mile 17 or so, many runners will begin slow down.  Many first timers are also overly optimistic about their pace ... this is for folks who think that they can handle a marathon at an 8 min pace as well as folks in the 14+ min pace. 


    I don't want to discourage you or your wife from participating.  For some, beating that bridge is more gratifying than crossing the finish line ... but you should know what you are up against ahead of time.  I'm a bit faster than you but even for me, crossing that bridge during my first marathon was a big deal.  That's the point when I knew without a shred of doubt that I would become a marathon finisher.



  • lenzlaw Community Moderator 10,539 posts since
    Jan 18, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Jul 31, 2009 2:07 PM (in response to zoom1)
    Re: Beating the Bridge


    The bridge closes at a specific time. Last year it was 1:15 and probably will be the same this year. It is set to re-open to traffic at 1:45 and the last runner time is usually a half-hour before. There is often a little wiggle room, but not a lot. If you're a quarter-mile away they will likely let you go (saw it happen last year), but not if you're a mile away.










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