Garda stripped of Dublin marathon medal after using Luas to travel part of course

A member of the anti-corruption unit of the Garda has returned the medal he received for completing last month’s Dublin City Marathon after it emerged that he may have travelled a significant portion of the 26 mile course on the Luas.

The man was banned from competing in future marathons on Friday evening after returning the medal and t-shirt he received for finishing the course. Race organisers also said he had apologised.

A Garda spokesman, meanwhile, said that a “fact-finding review” into the conduct of the officer, who was off-duty at the time, is now underway.

Suspicions were aroused after the runner recorded dramatically different times at the beginning and at the end of the race.

The computer chip attached to his race number recorded a time of around 10 minutes a mile in the first half of the race. Running at such a speed he would have been expected to finish the raced in around four hours and 30 minutes.

However the second half of the race was completed with an average speed of six minutes a mile, If the entire race had been run at such a speed the runner would have completed the course in just over two-and-a-half hours, a time which would have ranked him among the leading runners in the race.

A spokesman for Dublin City Marathon told The Irish Times that an investigation had been carried out and completed with the runner’s name and time removed from the official results page. They have also been banned from competing in future races.

In a short statement the Garda said it was “aware of a matter at the recent Dublin City Marathon involving an off-duty Garda. An Garda Síochána is currently conducting an internal fact finding review of the matter,” it concluded.

While stories of people taking public transport to complete marathons in cities such as London and New York are not unheard of, The Irish Times understands that this is the first time a participant in the Dublin City Marathon has been accused of taking a tram to finish the course.

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