Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Answer: When it's a *trail* marathon, of course! Trail races are notorious for being slightly off distance (and very few are certified due to the extra expense) but the SCG takes it to extremes.
The Seneca Creek Greenway Trail Marathon & 50K says this on its own home page:
"The marathon and 50K are at least 26.2 and 31 miles. One of the guys with a GPS says the marathon will be 30 and the 50K close to 34."
In fact, this observation has been verified by many people who have done the race.
The laughable part is that 50K is 31M so anyone doing the "marathon" part of the race is almost doing a 50K already (just one mile shy)! But instead of getting credit for the ultra, they're "just" getting marathon credit. Sigh.
Needless to say, I'm signed up for the marathon part of the race. One can actually decide in the middle of the race whether to do the optional 4M loop that turns it into a 34M "50K" and most people do it but I think I'll satisfy myself with 30 miles - assuming I still have my sanity at that point.