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Saturday, August 19, 2000 -- Parkersburg, WV
Parkersburg Half Marathon
Story and photos by Julie Black

[Details] [Coverage]
Results: [O/A 1-320] [321-640] [641-965] [Class 00-34] [35-44] [45-99] 2M  [O/A] 2M  [Class]
Pictures: [Set 1] [Set 2] [Set 3] [Set 4] [Set 5] [Set 6] [Set 7] [Set 8] [Set 9]
[1998 Half Marathon] [1999 Half Marathon]

Parkersburg 1/2 Marathon
The big start of the 2000 Parkersburg 1/2 Marathon
Well over 1,000 people, including runners, walkers, wheelchair participants, and spectators gathered on the river city's main drag to catch a glimpse of Governor Cecil Underwood, and the proud Mayor of Parkersburg, Jimmy Columbo. What were they doing up at 8:00 a.m. on a foggy Saturday morning you ask? The two popular WV politicians were there to greet elite runners from all over the country, and a number of folks from the mountain state who were ready to race in the 14th Annual Parkersburg 1/2 Marathon.

The cool morning was a welcome scene for the USAT&F Men's and Women's National Half Marathon Championship. The booming sound of the traditional musket started the event with a bang!

Parkersburg 1/2 Marathon
Butch Martin triumphs again
The wheelchair racers took off first, and many of the same faces from previous years were in the pack. Last year's Wheelchair Champion Butch Martin, proved to be the fastest once again by crossing the line with a time of 54:22.

Returning to compete this year was Diana McClure (1:28.08), of Charleston, WV, who also finished 1st in the Women's Wheelchair class in 1999. McClure took 5th overall and 1st for the ladies this year.

Among the elite runners, there were many familiar faces in the crowd.

Parkersburg 1/2 Marathon
You're never too young to high step it to the line
Rod DeHaven of Madison, Wis. has made an appearance at the 1/2 Marathon before, taking the overall top spot in 1998. This year, DeHaven returned to Parkersburg with the 2000 U.S. Men's Olympic Marathon Trials Champion (2:15:30), under his belt. With the cool weather on his side, DeHaven finished 1st in 1:03.06. "I was running with older, more mature training partners." Rod said in an interview with USAT&F of his training at South Dakota State, "They had seen other phenoms not get through the gates. I learned I had to work hard to get to the next level."

Todd Reeser of Rochester, NY was in the 1/2 Marathon in '98 and '99. Although he finished 4th in 1998, and 14th last year, he vastly improved his times in 2000 to take 2nd overall with a time of 1:04.13. Rounding out the top spots was elite runner Phillimon Hanneck(1:04.23), of Clackamus, OR. who took home the 3rd place prize.

Parkersburg 1/2 Marathon
Celebrating with a friend
The top finisher for the women was also an Olympian for 2000. Libbie Hickman beat her 1st place time from '98 by over 2 minutes to finish 34th overall and 1st for the women with a time of 1:11.01. A girl from out west, Hickman fulfilled her Olympic dream this year by finishing third at the Olympic Trials in the 10k. Sylvia Mosqueda(1:11.20), of South Pasedena, CA, came in 19 seconds behind Hickman to take 2nd. Finishing 3rd for the ladies was Kelly Cordell(1:14.12), of Lafayette, IN.

The first person to cross the line from West Virginia was Tony Basta of Parkersburg, who took 42nd overall in 1:13.29.

Parkersburg 1/2 Marathon
Happy to be at the finish
After the race, the activities were not over. The Parkersburg Homecoming celebrations continued with a parade and fireworks. The street was filled with colorful floats and performers who gave out candy to the crowds of children. Even the newly-crowned Miss Parkersburg Homecoming Queen made her way down the strip. Next year will be the 15th year for the 1/2 Marathon, and it will surely be an event that you won't want to miss!

Special Thanks --- to Norma Phillips, and Denise for their help with the results.