More than 4,000 runners will take to the streets Saturday morning, November 8, in the sixth annual Select Staffing Santa Barbara Veterans Day Marathon and Half-Marathon. There are two starting points — Hollister Avenue near the Page Youth Center for the half-marathon (7:15 a.m.) and Dos Pueblos High at Alameda Avenue and Cathedral Oaks Road for the full marathon (7:30 a.m.). Both races will finish at Leadbetter Beach.
Race director Rusty Snow said that 75-80 percent of the runners will come from outside the county. They will be reminded of the sacrifices of U.S. military veterans when they see the flags flying along the final stretch on Shoreline Drive, known as the Veterans Mile.
The event also has an international flavor. The marathon record holders are Moninda Marube, a Kenyan native from Maine who clocked 2 hours, 22 minutes, and 29 seconds in 2011, and Finland’s Elisa Karhu, a UC Berkeley medical student who ran 2:42:45 last year. Only two men finished ahead of Karhu.
Marube also won the marathon in 2010 and finished third in 2012. He is expected to try the half this year after winning the Maine Marathon a month ago.
Record-setters in the half-marathon are Joshua Glaab of Colorado, 1:06:27 in 2011, and Alvina Begay of Arizona, 1:15:00 in 2012.
The 26.2-mile marathon course loops around western Goleta and veers east on Cathedral Oaks. It merges with the half-marathon route on the Maria Ignacio bicycle path. The most heavily impacted roads in Santa Barbara will be Modoc, Las Positas, Cliff, and Shoreline between 8:15 and 11:30 a.m. Only the westbound and northbound lanes will be open to traffic while runners are on those roads.