Every Race Starts With A Mile!
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Welcome to the Excel Travel Ocean Avenue Mile 2013.
We are gearing up for the launch of registration for 2013 and are super excited of what is to come. The Race Course was not devastated by the super storm, so we are getting ready to run!
Registration will open on March 18th and we will update you here with relevant information and new as we create it.
To Start, we have taken your feed back to create a bigger and better 2013. We are going to reduce the number of heats and make sure the post race party is rockin on Ocean Avenue. We will look to reduce the race entry fee, while keeping all of our amenities, but that mean, you need to bring your friends out to run with us! The More The Merrier!
We will be hosting a series of group runs and clinics throughout the spring and summer to help you run your fastest mile and any other race throughout the racing season and beyond.
Keep an eye out for the registration on Mach 18th, through Active.com and Follow Us on Twitter @OceanAveMile!
An area road race is disgraced after learning its inaugural champion and course record holder admitted to doping. Christian Hesch, winner of the 2012 Excel Travel Ocean Avenue Mile Festival, held in Long Branch, was handed down an 18 month suspension from competition on December 14th, 2012.
Hesch, a California resident, won the Mizuno Open Men’s Mile heat of the Ocean Avenue Mile, just 11 days prior to openly admitting to using erythropoietin (EPO), which is prohibited under the USADA Protocol for Olympic Movement Testing and the International Association of Athletic Federations. He has been disqualified from all competitive results on or subsequent to August 27, 2010, the date which he admitted to first using EPO. Hesch must forfeit any medals, points, or prizes won during that time period.
“The race committee is extremely embarrassed by Hesch,” said Ocean Avenue Mile race director Aaron Levine. He continued, “The event was organized to bring together elite athletes, local runners, and children in order to raise money for charity and support the youth running initiative by the NJRRYF (New Jersey Road Runners Youth Foundation). This is not the example we aimed to set for our children, especially by our champion.”
Hesch won the Men’s Open Mile with a 4:16.23 mile. He took home $500 for this victory. The Ocean Avenue Mile will not seek to reclaim his prize money, but Hesch’s course record will be removed and replaced by Milltown resident Kyle Price’s 4:22.06.
Melissa Salerno, Ocean Avenue Mile’s 2012 women’s champion and a professional runner for New Balance, was a personal friend of Hesch before the scandal.
“The biggest fans of track and the elite runners are the local runners! They are the support system that helps drive elite athletes to achieve greater things. Therefore, when an elite runner resorts to doping, it is a complete devastation of trust”, said Salerno.
She plans to race in the 2013 Ocean Avenue Mile, but feels that there need to be harsher punishments for doping offenders and stronger measures in place to prevent doping at local races.
“I would like to say that there isn’t that much doping going on, but I know better. I think the testing rules at local races need to be a lot stricter, but I do understand that there are budget issues,” said Salerno. She continued, “I honestly do not believe 18 months is sufficient, but it is what it is. I’m not really familiar with the rules once the sanction is up, but I do think that Christian should never again be allowed to collect prize money from a race and he should have to pay all of what he stole back.”
September 14, 2013 is going to be bigger, better, and cleaner. We are working with Long Branch Recreation to develop a youth running camp for the summer and to get more involved with our charity partners. We hope to restore faith in our race for 2013 and look forward to attracting more local talent and elites from around the country to set an example for our youth contingency.