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home > news > usa: midwest > running legend benoit samuelson to host lakefront marathon event

Running Legend Benoit Samuelson to Host Lakefront Marathon Event
Includes fun run and premier of Nike Documentary “There is No Finish Line” on October 3 in Milwaukee

Running Legend Benoit Samuelson to Host Lakefront Marathon Event

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Running USA

Posted Thursday, 16 August, 2012

MILWAUKEE – (August 14, 2012) – Joan Benoit Samuelson, the winner of the first women’s Olympic Marathon during the 1984 Olympics and an overall running legend, who is a multiple winner of acclaimed marathons including two Boston Marathons, the Chicago Marathon and the only woman to run sub-2 hour, 50 minute marathons over five decades, will be in Milwaukee for a special event on Wednesday, October 3 leading up to the 2012 Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon on Sunday, October 7, 2012.

Benoit Samuelson will host a premier in Wisconsin of a new documentary she released with Nike entitled “There Is No Finish Line”, which chronicles her journey in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics and the strides made by her and other leading women in the sport to overcome challenges faced by women. The screening is set for 7:30pm on Wednesday, October 3, with both a 30 minute talk at 7:00pm and a fun run that is open to anyone in the community on Wednesday, beginning at 5:30pm from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. The screening and the overall event will be hosted by the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee in their student union.

“In an Olympic year, we really wanted to carry the excitement from London back to Milwaukee, and when we learned about the opportunity to have a running icon like Joan here in Milwaukee even for one night, we jumped at it,” said Kristine Hinrichs, race director. “Joan is an inspiration to women and runners everywhere that anything is possible if you put your heart to it. We’re thrilled to have her and debut her new documentary.”

Benoit Samuelson, who will be a featured speaker in the days following the Lakefront Marathon at the 2012 Bank of America Chicago Marathon, is one of the United States’ most recognizable athletes and an inspiration to women athletes around the globe. While a senior at Bowdoin College in 1979, she entered the Boston Marathon as a virtual unknown and won the race wearing a Boston Red Sox’s hat. She won the storied race again in 1983 setting a world best (2:22:43), following surgery on her Achilles, and then earned 1984 Olympic gold in Los Angeles.

She’s been a runner for more than three decades, and in April of 2008 participated in the Olympic Marathon Trials in Boston and ran a sub-2 hour, 50 minute marathon at age 50. Today she speaks across the world about her journey, and is also a commentator for NBC Sports and serves as a spokeswoman for Nike.

Milwaukee’s Lakefront Marathon continues to be a popular fall marathon destination. In April, officials announced the race had reached its capacity faster than any of the previous 31 years to its new capacity of 3,100 runners.

The 2012 Lakefront Marathon will take runners from Grafton to Milwaukee’s Veteran’s Park on Sunday, October 7. The Lakefront Marathon will also host a two-day expo on Friday and Saturday prior to the race, where runners can join pace teams, find information on nutrition, and exclusive gear for this year’s race. This year’s race will also feature a number of new elements, including the Paws vs. Claws University Challenge, pitting faculty, staff and students from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee versus those from Concordia University Wisconsin.

About Milwaukee’s Lakefront Marathon
The 32nd Lakefront Marathon, organized by Badgerland Striders running club, is scheduled for October 7, 2012 from Grafton to Milwaukee. The 2011 race drew more than 3,000 marathon runners in addition to their family members and friends. The annual race fills hundreds of hotels rooms, restaurants and the streets of Milwaukee’s North Shore each year. According to a 2010 survey by Events Response, total race and runner spending was between $1.2 million-$2.4 million with the U.S. Department of Commerce multiplier.

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