Reggae Marathon Welcomes Runners with Sun, Music and Local Hospitality

  • The Running Team
  • Written on:

At the 10th edition of the Reggae Marathon, participants enjoyed not only the Jamaican sun, but also a truly unique running experience. 

Negril, Jamaica  -- Nearly 1,200 runners from 29 countries toed the starting line at the tenth staging of the Reggae Marathon last Saturday.

On its tenth anniversary, Reggae Marathon cemented its reputation as an exotic destination marathon, its famous torch bearers and drummers providing a thrilling start that took the runners’ minds off the light rain.  The skies eventually cleared and the temperature remained a cool 72 F for most of the race.  The route took runners along the Negril coastline and ended at the Long Bay Beach Park, where runners poured onto Negril’s famous seven-mile white sand beach to enjoy post race massages and a swim.

This year’s event boasted its largest field ever, with an even mix of local and international runners.  President of the Jamdammers’ Running Club, Emile Leiba, said “We’re proud of creating and sustaining a world class event that promotes local running and brings visitors from all over the world to Jamaica.   We look forward to seeing Reggae Marathon grow stronger.”

The day’s other winners included Rubert Green, who finished in 2:30:27 and Elizabeth Mondon ran a slow tactical first half, before pushing ahead to finish in 2:55:50, a personal record.  Mondon is a native of France, but lives in Kingston and is a member of the Jamdammers  Running Club, giving the hosts of the Reggae Marathon their first victory in ten years.

Jamaicans Kirk Brown (1:10:57) from Clarendon and Twishauna Williams (1:29:08) from St. Catherine won the Half Marathon.  Shawn Pitter (31:56) and former American Olympian Carrie Tollefson (35:05) were the men’s and women’s champions in the 10k.  Tollefson, who represented the USA in 2004 in the Athens Olympics, donated her prize money to a local high school. 
St. Jago, Homewood Technical and Bellefield dominated the hotly contested High School 10k Championships.   St. Jago beat Holmwood in the girls’ 10k, but lost to them in the boys’ division.  Bellefield took third place in both events.
If you're looking for a truly unique running experience, check out the Reggae Marathon, Half Marathon, and 10K