Presidential hope, notes: Bank of America Chicago Marathon

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Diego Estrada, top finishing America at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon, exits the post-race news conference on crutches and his right ankle taped.
Credit: Dale Bowman

Though some hoped, President Barack Obama did not make a finish-line appearance at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon Sunday.

“It wasn’t in his plans,’’ executive race director Carey Pinkowski said. “It would have been great for the participants.”

He said race staff just had the usual contact with the Secret Service.

AMERICA: Diego Estrada, who left the post-race news conference on crutches and with his right ankle tightly wrapped, gutted out the top American finish (eighth, two hours, 13 minutes, 56 seconds). He rolled his right ankle on somebody’s dropped water bottle at 10K.

“We as runners are so emotional,” Estrada said. “It is a harsh comparison, but it is like part of me would have died out there today if I had dropped out.”

Serena Burla was the top American woman (seventh, 2:30:40).

WHEELING: Tatyana McFadden, out of the University of Illinois program, became the most decorated person in Chicago Marathon history, winning a sixth straight title (seventh overall) in women’s wheelchair racing in 1:42:28, edging Switzerland’s Manuela Schär by one second.

“Manuela is like a copy of me,’’ McFadden said. “I couldn’t shake anyone. I knew it would come down to the [ending] sprint.’’

The men’s side was even closer. Switzerland’s “Silver Bullet,” Marcel Hug, beat defending champion, Australian Kurt Fearnley, in a photo finish in 1:32:57.

“Never had that close a finish before,’’ Hug said.

“I had a sneaking suspicion Marcel had won, but I was hoping the photo finish would prove me wrong,” Fearnley said.

40th: Next year is the 40th Chicago Marathon. As to whether the field would be expanded, Pinkowski said, “Obviously the demand is there. We will look at that. We will take an in-depth look at that.”

On Sunday, 41,350 officially started the race.

MEDICAL: Race medical director, Dr. George Chiampas, said about 2,100 required some medical attention, mostly muscle cramping and for Tylenol.

There were 18 transports, as of the mid-afternoon wrap-up news conference, to local hospitals. That is one of the lower number of transports in recent years.

One cardiac event required shock and resuscitation, then a transport to a local hospital. Chiampas said the individual was being cared for, but there were no other details until the individual’s family is notified.

LONG OF IT: As of 2:30 p.m. Sunday, there was still about 4,000 runners on the course, said Pinkowski. Perhaps the nearly ideal temperatures kept more running longer than usual.


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