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Oct 19, 1998

Run ’til you drop on Sports Monday

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Good evening, I’m James Adderley and this is another version of Sports Monday. For the first time ever a full-length marathon of 26 miles was staged in a package yesterday presented by NTV of Japan as they launched their search for a Belizean talent to take to the Sydney Olympics 2000.

Now folks this is the cruelest race we’ve ever seen. At the start there are 26 runners, which finds only one female contender in the runnings. And this is the start of this 26-mile journey under the intense Belizean sun. In the early going Rojelio Pop jumps on the pace while the barefooted Marco Castellanos tries to tag along.

Just outside Belize City, Joseph Carr grabs the lead but it’s only momentarily as Pop comes right back. Around 8 miles Pop takes a breather, settling for a brisk walk. Nevertheless at the halfway mark at mile 13, Joseph Carr is the man of the moment as he turns and heads back to Belize City. Behind him Rojelio Pop keeps up his good running. And check it out folks, Marco Castellanos is now wearing a running shoes after subjugating his feet to a deadly mixture of sun and asphalt.

After 2 hours of running under the blistering heat, Joseph Carr succumbs. The other barefoot runner Ian Bainton runs off the asphalt when possible and at mile 5 he gets some mercy and his feet must be extremely grateful. Around Lord Ridge Cemetery Rojelio Pop begins to wobble and he simply can’t make it any further. Believe it people, it was so bad for Pop that he had to be taken immediately to the hospital.

Pop’s lead is now taken over by Castellanos and Bainton who both triumphantly enter the city. And at money time it’s Marco Castellanos bursting the tape in unchallenged fashion to write his name forever in the Belizean history books, with a time of 4 hours, 10 minutes, 37 seconds in the first full-length marathon ever. The other runner, who also started out barefoot, Ian Bainton pulls up second in 4 hours, 13 minutes, 18 seconds. One thing about the marathon winner folks, he has the support of his mom, and he has medals to prove that he is a legitimate contender.

For Guermo Avila, perseverance pays off and somehow this guy looks like he could go a couple more miles. But the most heroic finish goes to the 4th place athlete Chester Arzu who stays upright just long enough to cross the tape and that must have been the hardest 10 yards to run in his life. He is among the 4 that finished and we say congrats to all. From what we know Castellanos gets $1,000, Bainton $600. Both should travel to Japan for training. But with blistered feet like these it may take a while to recover, but they have learnt the hard way, you simply can’t run a marathon on bare feet.

Marco Castellanos, Winner

“It was tough. First of all when I was about 5 miles up, I think about quitting but “rest if you must, but don’t you quit”.

Q: “What kind of training did you do for the race?”

Marco Castellanos

“I didn’t train for this one really. Like I said, this is a gift from God. I only knew about it yesterday.”

Q: “You started the race barefooted, is that the way you usually run or you just didn’t have any sneakers?”

Marco Castellanos

“No, that’s usually the way I run: barefooted. But like how it was hot and the street was kinda rough, I had to put on a tennis.”

Q: “Hopefully you will be going to Japan, do you plan on running barefooted there or are you going to wear sneakers?”

Marco Castellanos

“No, I’ll wear sneakers.”

Q: “The race took a lot out of you, huh?”

Ian Bainton, Second Place

(lying on the ground) “Just when I was running, I was catching cramps.”

Q: “You started barefooted too, do you always run barefooted?”

Ian Bainton

“I’ve always run barefooted.”

Q: “But then you started having problems with your feet, apparently, right? Do you want to tell us what happened?”

Ian Bainton

“Coming I was catching cramp, so I had to walk and thing.”

Jospeh Carr

“Time fi train mi too short.”

Q: “Yeah, but you are a runner. Don’t you train all year ’round?”

Jospeh Carr

“No, I mi quit running. I just start to run back when they guys come in for the first 10-K. And they specify that they would be having another 10-K in October. So basically I start to train for the 10-K and then afterwards we heard that in August they would have a half marathon so I start to train for the half marathon. And then schedule changed, they would have a full marathon. To train for these types of races, you need to train thoroughly. And I know that no one ya neva run a 26 mile race before.”

Turning to the football scene, the M.C.C. Grounds found the Yabra Sporting Club looking to rebound against the Builder’s Hardware of Belmopan yesterday. It’s 20 minutes deep when Paul Kelly pins this spotkick, the Builder keeper misplays which allows Paulie Bradley to give Yabra a quick 1-zip lead.

About a minute and a half later David McCauley outruns the Belmopan defense and Yabra goes up 2-nil. Yabra makes it 3-zip when their Honduran import smashes this left foot into the net and at intermission the city team looks well on its way to the big “W”.

Of course you know it, I know it too, it’s not over until it’s over and it’s dangerous to count your chickens before they’re hatched. In second half Belmopan gets busy. This nice key to Locho Coye and Belmopan is on the scoreboard. One minute later Willie Bowe in Yabra’s goal gets embarrassed by this spotkick from Locho Coye and just like that Belmopan shows a 3-2 deficit. You decide people, did this goal score against Willie Bowe? It looks that way to us but referee Clother nor his assistant see it that way. Then again, what’s your take on this header from Locho Coye, the referee is not sure but after his consultation with his assistant he rules goal as the game concludes in a 3-3 final score.

In other B.F.L. football results from over the weekend Acros mashed up Southern United of Toledo down south, 4-zip while Dangriga Jaguars crushed Real Verdes 2-1.

Finally folks, the Belize Rifle Club presented a contest over the weekend. Charles Chavannes won the first stage of this particular event, the second stage of rapid-fire competition went to Ian McIntosh and Ian McMillan took the rumble in the jungle.

Hey folks, that’s our show for today. Jah over all. I’m James Adderley.

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