Public Relations Department's Jeremy Davidson entered in 110th distance classic DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (April 10, 2006) -- A very big race is on the horizon, and it's not even NASCAR-sanctioned. How big? This big: It will have approximately ...
Public Relations Department's Jeremy Davidson entered in 110th distance classic
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (April 10, 2006) -- A very big race is on the horizon, and it's not even NASCAR-sanctioned.
This big: It will have approximately 500,000 spectators spread out along a race course of 26.2 miles. There will be approximately 20,000 competitors and more than 1,000 media members reporting on it all.
The 110th Boston Marathon is set for April 17 with the event's massive starting grid including Jeremy Davidson, an Amherst, Mass. native who handles public relations outreach for NASCAR's weekly and touring competition levels.
Boston will be the fourth marathon for Davidson, 30. But he equates this run as something akin to a young driver making their first start at Daytona (because of the prestige) or Darlington (because of the history).
As in auto racing, an entrant must qualify for the Boston Marathon. You don't just show up on race day with your gym bag. To qualify for entry to the Boston event, one must provide the Boston Athletic Association proof of completion of a prior marathon in a time of less than 3 hours, 10 minutes. Davidson qualified with a time of three hours and seven minutes in the Walt Disney World Marathon in Orlando, Fla., in January. That time was 44 minutes quicker than Davidson's first marathon time of 3:51 in the Disney event in 2004.
Davidson began training for the Boston event shortly after he qualified for it, consuming 100 ounces of water a day, maintaining a diet of 70 percent carbohydrates, and daily running distances of 10 to 15 miles or more.
"I'm on pins and needles waiting for the event to start," Davidson said. "The Boston Marathon is an American sporting tradition like the Daytona 500. As a race course, Boston is really the "Darlington" of marathons. At 110 years, Boston is the oldest marathon like Darlington is NASCAR's oldest superspeedway. The Boston Marathon course is extremely difficult, just like Darlington Raceway."
Davidson is actually carrying on another NASCAR tradition of sorts. A number of people either employed by NASCAR or involved with the sport have done marathons, triathlons or other running events, as shown by the list below.
• Kyle Petty, Driver, Petty Enterprises: Victory Junction Half-Marathon; 2005 Las Vegas International Marathon; 2006 Walt Disney World Marathon.
• Michael Waltrip, Driver, Bill Davis Racing: 2000 Boston Marathon; 2000 Hops Marathon by the Bay (Tampa); 2005 Las Vegas International Marathon; Kiawah Island Marathon (South Carolina).
• J.D. Gibbs, President, Joe Gibbs Racing: Charlotte Marathon, 2000, 2002.
• Ashton Lewis, Driver, Team Rensi Motorsports: 2005 Marine Corps 8k.
• Doug Randolph, Crew Chief, No. 14 MB2 Motorsports team: Triathlons.
• Lesa Kennedy, President, International Speedway Corporation: 2003 Melbourne, Fla. triathlon.
• Dick Glover, NASCAR Vice President of Broadcasting and New Media: 2004 Disney Marathon.
• Shawn Rogers, NASCAR Director of Business Affairs: 13 Ironman triathlons, five marathons, one Ultra marathon (50k/31 miles) in which he finished third, and many other events.
• Brian Corcoran, NASCAR Director of Corporate Marketing: 2002 Boston Marathon.
• Brent Shaver, Machinist, Joe Gibbs Racing: Three triathlons, one 10k, one half-marathon.
• Todd Wilkerson, President, Brewco Motorsports: Half-marathon.
• Rob Winchester, VP/Administration, Team Rensi Motorsports: 2005 Marine Corps 8k.
• Ken Hazlett, Operator, Global Performance Group, LLC: Marathons, Triathlons.
• Heather Petry, Director, The Evernham Group: Marathons.
• Gregg Wilson, Engine Assembly Department, Joe Gibbs Racing: Two marathons; 10 Ironman triathlons.
• Wayne Stemler, Accountant, Hendrick Motorsports: Climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, world's highest freestanding mountain (19,340 feet; 3.75 miles tall), 56-mile round trip, February, 2006.
• Brad White, Marketing Coordinator, Motorsports Management International: Seven marathons including Chicago in 2005, and New York in 2004.
• Kevin Nevalainen, NASCAR Senior Account Executive: Two marathons.
• Gillian Zucker, President, California Speedway: Two marathons, three triathlons, two sprint series marathons.
• J.J. O'Malley, Senior Editor, ISC Publications: 93 marathons including 12 at Boston since 1977. In 1982, O'Malley also completed the unique Empire State Building Run-Up, a .2-mile run up the 1,576 steps (86 floors) from the lobby to the observation deck of the Empire State Building. O'Malley's time: 12 minutes, 30 seconds.