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Will Chicago Marathon Shutdown Impact 2016 Summer Bid?

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The Chicago Marathon shut down early for the first time in its 30-year history Sunday because of the oppressive heat and humidity that triggered more than 300 ailments.

The Chicago Tribune reports that runners reported water shortages and one runner died because of a heart condition.

Chicago is bidding for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games and Marc Ganis, sports industry consultant and president of Chicago-based Sportscorp Ltd. said, “we do have to perform well, we really do”. He was referring to the AIBA World Boxing Championship opening in Chicago Oct. 23, which is reportedly the biggest Olympics-related event in the city since the 1959 Pan American Games.

University of Chicago sports economist Allen Sanderson said that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is unlikely to make the distinction that the marathon was privately operated. He said, “this is a big event and they will look at how the city handled it”.

Alan Abrahamson of NBC Sports and an Olympic Games bid expert said, “all things are possible in the world of Olympic bidding”. But he said the Chicago Marathon affecting Chicago’s 2016 bid was “a remote possibility” because of “a freakish event of nature in a vote that’s two years from now when so many things will happen by then”.

Chicago 2016 spokesman Patrick Sandusky said Monday in a prepared statement, “it is important to note that the Olympic Games marathon, with few than 200 elite athletes, is a very different event than yesterday’s race of nearly 40,000 runners”.

He said the bid team is confident that Olympic marathon officials “will consider the conditions here in Chicago, and especially our central, lakefront marathon course, to be more than sufficient to provide the Olympic athletes with a great Games experience”. Write or read comments about this article

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