Navy men, Air Force women earn gold in Armed Forces marathon competition

By Lt. Dale Eng, Armed Forces Sports Public Affairs Officer U.S. Armed Forces Sports

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Navy lieutenant Patrick Hearn and Army first lieutenant Lindsay Gabow finished today’s 43rd running of the Marine Corps Marathon as the top male and female Armed Forces team runners, respectively.   

The 2018 Armed Forces Marathon Championship was held in conjunction with the 43rd Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, D.C. on October 28. Cool, still, overcast conditions made for ideal running weather, and contributed to many of the top finishers achieving a personal record for time.   

Hearn, running in his third Marine Corps Marathon, improved on his second place armed forces/fifth place overall finish from last year with a personal record time of 2:23:26. The All Navy team runner started the race strong and then ran as part of a pack of three Navy runners before making a move between the Mile 18 and 19 marks by the U.S. Capitol building to run neck and neck with the overall winner for much of the remainder of the race. 

“He helped me out quite a bit,” said Hearn. “I was just trying to maintain pace and finish strong.”

Hearn, a native of Irvine, California, is a nuclear surface warfare officer, currently stationed at Naval Surface Warfare Center Corona.

On the women’s side, Gabow, an intelligence officer at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas, also finished with a personal record time of 2:46:34, as it was her first ever marathon.

“I used to run 6-8 miles a day, but then got teamed up with a coach, and right now I’m working toward hitting an Olympic Time Trial qualifying time,” said Gabow.

“What I loved best about this race was the relationships we forge,” said Gabow. “I know it’s a cliche, but in the military, many times we’re taught to ‘embrace the suck,’ which is what I kept telling myself over and over from mile 21 to the end.” 

Navy Lt. Cmdr. Will Christian finished second among men armed forces runners, and third overall, with a personal record time of 2:24:23. Christian, a Navy Reserve surface warfare officer attached to Naval Operational Support Center Baltimore, said, “It was in Crystal City that things started to get hard for me with all the turns. Patrick took off and so I went on hoping for third.”

Meanwhile, 1st Lt. Lindsay Carrick, a logistics officer with the U.S. Marine Corps in Quantico, completed her third Marine Corps Marathon in second place for the armed forces in the women’s division with a time of 2:48:43. “I was a runner in high school and as a senior at the Naval Academy,” said Carrick. “I think my military training helped set me up for success in this race with the whole idea that practice makes perfect, so when you’re well trained - not just the running, but nutritionally, and with sleep - it makes an event like this less difficult.”

In team competition, Navy ended Army’s seven-year run on top to take the gold. With both teams tied at the end of the race, Navy edged Army out on the tie breaker. 

Air Force and Marines finished in third and fourth places, respectively. Men’s team scoring is calculated on the displacement scoring system, by scoring the placement of the top four of six runners. Tie-breakers are determined by the placement of the next set of runners.

In the women’s team competition, there was also a two-way tie for gold between Marine Corps and Air Force.

With Marine Corps and Air Force tied at eight points each, the placement of the next runner determined the final outcome giving Air Force the team gold over Marines.  

Marine Corps finished with silver, as Army and Navy took third and fourth respectively.  

Team women scores are determined by the top two of four runners.  

In separate action, the Marine Corps defeated the British Royal Navy/Marines in their annual Warriors Across the Sea Challenge, sweeping both the men and women’s competition.  

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