The 2014 Missoula Marathon for its first time in race history has all four of the prior year marathon and half marathon race winners coming back to defend their titles. Run Wild Missoula will host the eighth annual race on July 13 and for the first time will offer a prize package that could award the 2014 winners $1,000.
Jason Delaney of Polson will defend the men’s marathon championship as well as the course record holder while Elizabeth Paddock of Missoula will defend the women’s marathon championship. Both will be facing stiff competition, as there are four men with personal bests that are better than the current course record.
One of those four is Matt Flaherty of Indiana who will return for his second Missoula Marathon with a recent personal best of 2:21 with a 32nd placing at the Boston Marathon. This is five minutes faster than the current course record although Delaney has run 2:19. Challenging on the women’s side is Camille Herron of Oklahoma. Herron is attempting to win a marathon in every state, a feat never before done by female, and win them with times faster than 2:50:00.
In the half marathon, Jim Walmsley of Great Falls and Kath Hardcastle will also defend their titles. Both Walmsley and Hardcastle set course records in 2013, but both records are sure to fall as eight men and 11 women are entered who have run faster than the current course records. On the men’s side, Carlos Trujillo of Boise who this past summer represented the United States at the world track championships in the marathon will appear as well as Ian Burrell, a 2:13 marathoner and 1:02 half marathoner. Heather Lieberg of Helena and Megan Rolland of Blue Lake, Calif., have run five minutes faster than the current course record. Lieberg this winter ran the third fastest marathon ever by a Montanan behind Julie Brown and Debra Raunig.