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13,000 alleged cheaters at Mexico City Marathon

Race organizers have reportedly made efforts to cut down cheating, but at first glance, it appears nothing has changed

Unofficially, the 2018 Telco Mexico City Marathon has seen an estimated 13,000 runners facing disqualification for shortening the course. Marathon Investigation suggests that while official results are not yet available, there were multiple reports out of Mexico City that suggested mass-cheating. 

Last year’s marathon saw 5,806 participants officially disqualified after an analysis of the results showed that many had missed multiple timing mats. 

Two separate articles out of credible Mexican news sources reported the cheating. They have both been taken down. Marathon Investigation reports that, “Both articles have been taken down. It is unknown whether they were taken down under political pressure, or because of any inaccuracies. What is clear, however, is that based on initial findings, the cheating was once again widespread.”

RELATED: Over 1,000 Boston Qualifying runners accused of cheating at Mexico City Marathon

After the 2017 race, we spoke with Jorge Rodriguez, a runner from Toronto with close ties to the Mexican running scene. He spoke with us candidly about what he feels was the primary motivation for all these runners to shorten the course.


“There’s no doubt many runners did not complete the whole course this year. Most of them have since been disqualified which is the correct decision,” he said. “But they did not do this to secure a spot in Boston or steal someone’s else’s place. They did it for the medal.”

2018 was the year of the “O” medal. Since 2013, the official finisher’s medal has been in the shape of a letter. In 2013, it was “M” with the next year being “E” followed by “X” and then “I”, and last year “C”. The letters of the finishers medals eventually spell Mexico, with 2018 being the final letter. Race organizers have reportedly made efforts to cut down cheating, but at first glance, it appears nothing has changed. 


The 36th Telco Mexico City International Marathon took place 50 years after the 1968 Olympics and followed the same route as the Olympic Marathon. 

Canadian Reid Coolsaet finished in 2:28 at an elevation of 2,250 metres. The course is at elevation, which to a certain extent, will make finishing times slower. According to his Strava data, Coolseat averaged 3:29 per kilometre over the historic marathon course. 

Titus Ekiru of Kenya was the overall winner in 2:10:37. He was followed by Edwin Koech and Matthew Kipkoech Kisorio, both of Kenya. 

In the women’s results, Etaferahu Woda Temesgen won in 2:40:10, Fantu Eticha Kimma was second in 2:40:24, and third went to Tinbit Gidey Weldegebriel in 2:40:27. All three women are from Kenya. 

The elite results gathered are complied from Strava posts and Tweets. Official results have yet to be released.