Ghost Runners

Hi All,

anyone heard off people turning up for marathons without officially entering them,i did Edinburgh Mara this year and a guy i shared a few mile with says he just runs most years and when quizzed about number,responds that he lost it.

will i see people like this in London and does it happen often in other events


  • In FLM, unofficial runners tend to get removed from the course at the 25 mile point, so I understand.
  • I've often wondered why unofficial runners can't take part in any race run on public roads, as long as they don't expect to get a time, goody bag etc of course. I'm assuming the bye-laws which close the roads to motor traffic etc also exclude anyone not officially taking part..
  • Races take a lot of expense and effort to organize. Road closures and medical backup are only a part of what race directors (often volunteers) have to arrange.

    Anyone who wants to take part should have the decency to pay the entry fee.

    The guy you ran alongside at Edinburgh is a parasite, pure and simple.

  • I meant of course what's to physically stop them, rather than implying it would be right to do it.
  • Interesting point.  Could cause chaos if all the ballot rejects decided to descend upon London and run the marathon unofficially.
  • Wasn't there a thread this year with some photos of a bloke in a Wolves shirt with a fake number? I think there are quite a lot of people who will run London each year without an entry, I don't understand it myself,  how can you enjoy the experience knowing you are, as Muttley so aptly puts, a parasite?
  • I think "parasite" is a bit strong.

    As long as you don't expect a medal, then I don't suppose it matters if the odd one runs on the same course for a while. If I had a 12 mile training run to do, it would be quite nice to run from Greenwich to Tower Bridge on marathon day.

    There's quite a tradition in Boston of 'bandit' runners for the marathon.

  • There's very heavy security from Birdcage Walk onwards - so there's a good chance of you being hauled off from then onwards - the 'physical' bit is the army type guys who will actually stop you if you've been identified as not being a bona fide runner.
  • i think i may have been understood,i have a place i was just enquiring as to how devious people can get ..

    ie do they have fake numbers

    just lie and hopefully get away with it

    and apart from havin no number how do they tell you are'nt an official runner,as it wouldnt be the first time i have lost a number

  • There was a case a couple of years ago of a BBC reporter who had a place but had lost his number, or left it at home, He created his own (using his bonafide race number) but was still hauled off the course just before the finish line. At the time, it was regarded as a sort of heavy handed outrage, but to be honest, I don't think they had much choice. I don't suppose the security guys can be expected to do ID checks in those circumstances.
  • i can understand to a point ,but i think i would feel pissed if i lost my number and got hauled off because of it
  • Well you won't get your number till you get to the expo, usually the day before the race, so you would have to go some to lose it!

  • lost it during a race,and never really noticed till near end
  • Oh I see!   Well, extra pins then?  Solvite Wallpaper paste?
  • tick - tock wrote (see)
    i can understand to a point ,but i think i would feel pissed if i lost my number and got hauled off because of it

    I don't see an alternative. You are issued with a number and you're obliged to wear it during the race. It's not a lot to ask, If they announced that it was OK to create your own, you know what would happen -- you'd get loads of people turning up with home-made numbers, whether they were legitimate or not.

    If you can't wear your number, for whatever reason, it's too bad. You'll be able to start the race but not finish it, or claim a medal.

    It doesn't matter if it's issued the day before, you still have plenty of time to lose a number! I heard of one runner who got off the coach on the morning of the race, and as the coach disappeared over the horizon, he realised that his number had fallen out, and was still on the coach. He had to pull out.

  • Now they've increased security so that you have to show your number to gain access for all starts - the Red used to be 'open' - but the marshals still checked you had a number before you got into a pen.  So no number no start either.
Sign In or Register to comment.