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  • Marathon Winner Disqualified for Listening to iPod

    image via Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

    The winner of a marathon in Milwaukee, Wisc. was stripped of her title after photos showed she had an iPod on her during the race. Competitors going for US Track and Field championships and/or cash prizes are prohibited from using any electronic devices while running.

    The rule has caused a great deal of controversy among runners. It was relaxed by US Track and Field officials in the last year, leaving it up to the race directors in specific competitions to decide if electronic devices are to be allowed. As a result, a two-tiered standard has emerged average runners are generally permitted to use a music player, but elite runners are not.

    Jennifer Goebel, 27, got a time of 3:02:50 and came in second after the winning runner was disqualified for accepting a water bottle from a friend. She disagrees with the outcome, and says she's being unfairly singled out for a harmless act. "If they're going to disqualify me for having an iPod they should disqualify everyone who had one," she said. "It's just a little ridiculous. I went there to have a fun race with my friends."

    After the original winner, Cassie Peller, was disqualified, her supporters discovered Goebel's iPod in an online photo album, and complained that Peller had been unfairly singled out by race officials, and that Goebel also deserved to be disqualified.

    Goebel, for her part, said she is willing to give up the $500 prize for listening to her iPod, but feels her win should stand. "I wasn't listening to [the iPod] earlier in the race," she said. "I wasn't going to put the music on unless I thought I needed it. If you're bored, it pumps you up a little bit. Sometimes, on a long training run, I'll bring it along for the last half hour. When I run marathons sometimes I carry it and never put it on."
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Marathon Winner Disqualified for Listening to iPod started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 53 Comments
    1. cmwade77's Avatar
      cmwade77 -
      She did break the rules, but the rules need to be evenly applied and disqualify any others using ipods as well.

      BTW, this is the stupidest rule that I have ever heard of.
    1. RaginAsian55's Avatar
      RaginAsian55 -
      3:02 in crazy fast!! how fast was the original winner's time?! It's amazing that the two lead people are both disqualified for miniscule things. They both broke the rules and sound like they might not take it incredibly seriously. They may be fast, good runners- but they should accept consequences if they choose not to obey guidelines directed by the competition. (And yes, I realize what I just said on a JB community forum... but I accept my own consequences as well) ;-)
    1. xxxshortkidxxx's Avatar
      xxxshortkidxxx -
      I've worked a couple marathons in the SF Bay Area and they allow recreational runners to have ipods/headphones on, but if you are competing for time then you must not wear any electronics. Do your times count for competition?

      Quote Originally Posted by santacruzlocal View Post
      As a Marathoner myself ... I can not live without my Ipod. However for those of you who don't know. The reason why electronic devices are not allowed is for the safety of the runners. You can not hear other runners if you have earphones in.

      I myself cut one side off so I can hear ... but when your running a close race at the end you don't want to trip someone or for them to trip you.

      I HATE this rule .. they should be able to do whatever they want !! The people who make this rule have never ran 13.1 (Half Marathon) or 26.2 (Full Marathon) Miles in their life.

      **Side Note** I also can not live without my Nike+ http://nikerunning.nike.com/nikeplus/
    1. dunlapface's Avatar
      dunlapface -
      I don't get why they are not allowed to listen to their ipods. That is by far the dumbest rule that i have ever heard. It's not going to make a difference whether or not she is listening to music.
    1. n00neimp0rtant's Avatar
      n00neimp0rtant -
      Why are we b!tching about "she should have followed the rules?" This website is DEDICATED to breaking the rules!

      Quote Originally Posted by Jahooba View Post
      The strange thing is that it's actually a burden to the runner. I've never ran more than a mile at one time, but if you have a few ounces of electronics on you and you have to propel your mass over 26 miles, those few ounces can really add up in terms of energy output.
      I guess that's what these are for:
    1. thecork's Avatar
      thecork -
      Quote Originally Posted by santacruzlocal View Post
      As a Marathoner myself ... I can not live without my Ipod. However for those of you who don't know. The reason why electronic devices are not allowed is for the safety of the runners. You can not hear other runners if you have earphones in.
      I can't believe i am the only one to ask this, but...does this imply that deaf people are not allowed to run then?
    1. Mattymoo08's Avatar
      Mattymoo08 -
      Kind of unfair. They should have told her off during the race rather than after she won. It's their fault for not noticing before the end of the race.

      I can see why it's against the rules but I kinda understand why someone would listen to music while running; it'd keep your mind off of how much further you need to run.

      Also, just a 'did you know?', sweat/liquid + ipod earphones = electrical shocks to the ears.
    1. StealthBravo's Avatar
      StealthBravo -
      Quote Originally Posted by santacruzlocal View Post
      As a Marathoner myself ... I can not live without my Ipod. However for those of you who don't know. The reason why electronic devices are not allowed is for the safety of the runners. You can not hear other runners if you have earphones in.

      I myself cut one side off so I can hear ... but when your running a close race at the end you don't want to trip someone or for them to trip you.

      I HATE this rule .. they should be able to do whatever they want !! The people who make this rule have never ran 13.1 (Half Marathon) or 26.2 (Full Marathon) Miles in their life.

      I am a marathoner too and around mile 18, I need a playlist to carry me the last 8 miles. I hate the rule but understand why its there. I am running the Rock and Roll San Antonio next month with live music every 1/2 mile

      Nike+ and garmin gps watch ftw!!!!
    1. one1's Avatar
      one1 -
      When they come out with the iPod suppository she can run all she wants
    1. angiepangie's Avatar
      angiepangie -
      I still think marathon/cross country runners are crazy
    1. ultimatexpka's Avatar
      ultimatexpka -
      they are going to say something far fetched as an excuse, like, "study proves that use of any music device during running helps the person run and makes them last longer"
    1. extremzocker's Avatar
      extremzocker -
      at my school its not allowed either and you will be disqualified if caught...
      its just stupid
    1. Fallguy's Avatar
      Fallguy -
      Aintthatboutabitch
    1. jschmall's Avatar
      jschmall -
      Quote Originally Posted by thecork View Post
      I can't believe i am the only one to ask this, but...does this imply that deaf people are not allowed to run then?
      Actually, deaf people frequent marathons. They are just as capable as the next person. Yes, they have to be more aware of what's going on around them but they can participate nonetheless.
    1. n00neimp0rtant's Avatar
      n00neimp0rtant -
      Quote Originally Posted by jschmall View Post
      Actually, deaf people frequent marathons. They are just as capable as the next person. Yes, they have to be more aware of what's going on around them but they can participate nonetheless.
      Of course, but I don't think that's what he meant. I think he was trying to say "If the rule is in place to make people more aware of the runners around them because they'd be able to hear, then how does that affect people who can't hear at all?" In other words, the "can hear better without an iPod" argument is a moot point because there are people participating who naturally can't hear by default.
    1. SupaMonkey's Avatar
      SupaMonkey -
      Im sorry, its just ridiculous.

      Im a runner myself and I use my iPhone for all my runs. Saying its a danger to other runners is like saying a radio is a danger to other cars on the road.

      Its quite simple really, when you run you stick to your line and you will be fine. If you intend on changing that line, look back so that you dont possibly run into any runners that plan on overtaking you.
      Not only that, but when I listen to my music, I dont have it so loud that I cant hear anything else. If you have your volume at a decent strength - then you can enjoy your music and still be able to hear should anyone yell at you for whatever reason.

      I'm glad that in South Africa we don't have such ridiculous rules such as these... yet.
    1. s4mb4's Avatar
      s4mb4 -
      its a safety issue. it has nothing do to with performance or relaxation. when you have music in your ears, you cannot hear things like cars and trucks. holding races cost money for insurance. if a runner dies because of they run in front of a car, the race director may be sued. in our litigious society, race directors are only protecting themselves.
    1. unclebnz's Avatar
      unclebnz -
      Apple should give her an endorsement for sparking up free publicity.
    1. gionnan1495's Avatar
      gionnan1495 -
      lol seriously? and like 3/4 of the people had iPods or some other mp3 player
    1. kdp8791's Avatar
      kdp8791 -
      Isn't the whole purpose of the Nike + kit for running, the ipod including. So then whats the point of an iPod if you can't run with it. Those rules are a bunch of BS.