Train at crossing brings Portlandathon results into dispute

October 12, 2018 by  

During the recent Portlandathon marathon, runners were forced to stop and wait for a train to clear the Northwest Naito Parkway crossing, resulting in confusion concerning the race’s results.

The Portlandathon is a qualifying race held in Portland for one of the most high-status races in the world, the Boston Marathon, but the train’s interruption of the race could present problems for those attempting to qualify.

Paula Harkin, local race organizer, has contacted the governing body, USA Track & Field, for marathons and similar events throughout the country; to alert them of the train delay during the race. She also touched base with official of the Seattle marathon that said a discount would be offered to any runners wishing to take part in that race.

Tomonori Sakamoto, the first man across the finish line, was already past the railroad tracks when the train cut him off from the rest of the runners, some of whom waited as long as 22 minutes. Although results are unofficial, the second place finisher crossed the line 27 minutes later. Scores of runners were also delayed near Nicolai Street and Northwest 22nd Avenue.

Banner printing orders are generally placed weeks prior to races such as this one to promote the event as well as to showcase the start and finish lines.

Union Pacific had agreed to accommodate the race by adjusting their train schedule for crossings on the race route but the railroad experienced mechanical problems disrupted their schedule.