40th Anniversary Nationwide Children's Hospital Columbus Marathon Features Records and Close Finish


(COLUMBUS, OH – Oct. 20, 2019) – Both the male and female Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus ½ Marathon course records were broken today, along with a photo-finish in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon.


“We knew the 40th anniversary was going to be special, but to have two course records fall in the ½ marathon and the full marathon be decided by two-one-hundreds of a second – well, that was special,” said Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon Race Director Darris Blackford. “I am also proud to say we have raised nearly $10 million for Nationwide Children’s Hospital in our eight years of the partnership. We are thrilled to support the life-saving work of Nationwide Children’s Hospital.”


Following were highlights of the day:

  • $1.3 million and counting was raised for Nationwide Children's Hospital during the 2019 event; for a total of nearly $10 million raised since the partnership with the hospital started in 2012;
  • Three Americans qualified for the U.S. Olympic Trials, including two females in the marathon (beating the 2:45 qualifying time) and the third-place male marathon finisher (besting the 2:19 qualifying time);
  • A field of approximately 15,000 participated from 45 states and 13 countries;
  • 24 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Patient Champions and their families were along 24 miles; one mile was the Angel Mile and was dedicated to the angels of Nationwide Children’s who have already run their race; and one mile was the Encore Mile for the nearly 200 Patient Champions from previous races.



*Course record

**Qualified for the US Olympic Trials


Marathon Male

  • Sammy Rotich, Kenya                                                    2:15:05
  • Elijah Rugut, Kenya                                                          2:15:05:02
  • Jason Witt, Columbus, OH                                            2:18:22**


Marathon Female

  • Fayne Gudato, New York, NY                                      2:34:29
  • Viola Bor, Toledo, OH                                                     2:35:50
  • Maria Scavuzzo, Oxford, OH                                         2:37:52*
  • Clara Santucci, Lawrence, PA                                       2:41:19*                                             


½ Marathon Male

  • James Ngandu, Kenya                                                     1:02:14* (also was 2018 ½ Marathon champ)
  • Dominic Korir, Kenya                                                      1:02:17
  • E.K. Kurui, Grand Prairie, TX                                         1:03:20                                


½ Marathon Female

  • Vicoty Chepngeno, Kenya                                             1:10:27*
  • Sarah Horbol, Westlake, OH                                         1:17:42
  • Sarah Biehl, Hilliard, OH                                                 1:18:52


½ Marathon Wheelchair Male

  • Joey Gibbs, Ocala, FL                                                       1:01:57


½ Marathon Wheelchair Female

  • Sarah Werner, Columbus, OH                                      1:34:06


Marathon – Wheelchair Male

  • Steven Smith, Plover, WI                                               1:49:43





  • 24 Miracle Mile Patient Champions who have shared their stories to inspire
  • 3,000 volunteers making this marathon possible
  • Approximately 15,000 athletes come from 45 states (we are only missing representation from Alaska, Delaware, Nevada, New Mexico, and South Dakota)
  • Nearly 100 bands and entertainers add extra cheer
  • 25-member marathon team and 11-member marathon board of directors that have put in approximately 10,000 hours of planning
  • Approximately 60,000 people attend the Health & Fitness Expo on Friday, Oct. 18 and Saturday, Oct. 19
  • Approximately 100,000 spectators cheer on athletes on Race Day
  • Participants in the ½ Marathon range in age from 12 years of age (we have 9 registered) to 89 years of age; participants in the full range in age from 16 years old to 77 years old.
  • Participants in the full marathon hail from USA, Brazil, Canada, China, Ecuador, Germany, Kenya, Peru, Thailand and the UK. Participants in the ½ marathon hail from the USA, Australia, India and the Netherlands.
  • 116 elite athletes are entered in the full and the ½ marathon – 54 women and 62 men.
  • Nearly 1,000 Children’s Champions raise money for Nationwide Children’s Hospital through the event
  • 42 participants are running the race on their birthday!


  • 100,000-plus White Castle cups of water to quench thirst
  • 100,000-plus cups of Lemon-Lime Gatorade when water just doesn’t cut it
  • 14,000 bananas, 8,000 apples, 22,500 bottles of water, 12,000 peanut butter sandwich cracker 6-packs, 12,000 packets of string cheese, 18,000 Zone Perfect bars, 12,000 Haribo Halloween gummies, 13,000 cartons of Smith’s Chocolate Milk, 12,000 bagels, 12,000 goldfish crackers, 12,000 Frito-Lay chips
  • 500-plus portable bathrooms for relief 
  • 20,000-plus Clif Shot energy gels to refuel (chocolate, vanilla, raspberry and citrus flavored!)
  • 96 portable generators to power the course



  • 1 Angel Mile to honor, remember and celebrate the angels of Nationwide Children’s who have already finished their race
  • 1 Encore Mile, for the patients who lined the 2012 – 2018 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon course
  • 20,000 feet of fencing (nearly 4 miles) along various parts of the course
  • 201,600-watt sound system to rev up runners at the Start Line
  • 24 White Castle “Striding Slyders” and New Albany Walking Club pace team members
  • 27 permits throughout five different police jurisdictions to close down 26.2 miles of roads
  • More than 8,000 lbs. of discarded clothes donated to Goodwill Columbus



  • Nationwide Children’s Hospital has more than 1.2 million patient visits annually and stays true to its mission of providing care regardless of the family’s ability to pay.
  • As a result of the partnership between the Columbus Marathon and Nationwide Children’s Hospital launched in 2012, more than $8.5 million has been raised to support the life-saving work of Nationwide Children’s Hospital (we could hit $10 million this year!).


About The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon

The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon is now in its 40th year. In its 14th year, the ½ Marathon is the largest in Columbus. Nearly $10 million has been raised for Nationwide Children's Hospital since it became the title beneficiary of the event in 2012.  For more information, visit www.columbusmarathon.com.


For more information on today’s race and full race results, visit www.columbusmarathon.com.