New marathon course produces fast times for many, including top finishers

Sunday, May 1, 2011 at 10:45pm
Staff reports

A revamped Country Music Marathon course led to fast times for many on Saturday.

For Laura Portis, a Nashville native who recently qualified for the 2012 U.S. Olympic marathon trials, it provided some welcomed variety.

“The heat kind of got to me, but it was a fun course with lots of energy,” the women’s runner-up said. “The new course is great and it was nice to run through East Nashville.”

Portis finished second to Ruby Milena Riativa of Colombia, who finished in 2:50:00, 1:24 ahead of Portis, who finished ninth in 2010.

David Kellum of Kenya won the men’s race in a personal best and race record time of 2:17:41. He also prevented a Colombian sweep. Edwin Romero, also a Colombian, led the first 10 miles before Kellum overtook him.

“I’m very glad to PR, the weather was good and I liked the course. I was a little worried for the first few miles, because I could see Romero ahead of me and had to work hard to catch up,” Kellum, who lives in Georgia, said.. “But I felt strong and am happy to come away with a win. I’m ready to come back next year and improve my time again.”

The marathon’s course for its 12th year included a new finish line at the north end of LP Field, where a finish line festival was held.