Idiot Deadspin Blogger Jon Gugala Sends Lynch Mob After 4 Boston College Students For Running Boston Marathon As Bandits

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So we wrote sometime last week about how bullshit it was that the BAA wasn’t allowing bandits to run in the Boston Marathon this year. Basically bandits are a HUGE part of the Marathon tradition. The qualifying standards are so high that regular people from around here simply can’t qualify unless they quit their jobs and become full time runners. The only option is to raise money for a charity, but it has to be a pre-approved BAA charity, such as the Red Cross.

The problem with the charity route is twofold: 1) Only 39 cents of every dollar you raise for the Red Cross actually goes to charity. The rest goes to pay their CEO his million dollar salary. 2) You have to commit to raising $4,000 – $5,000. If you can’t raise that, you pay the difference. That’s a giant risk to take for a regular working class schmuck.

So without the bandit option the race becomes an exclusionary exhibition filled with carpetbaggers and really slow people raising money for “charity.” This year they were diligent in Hopkinton to check out every runner’s bib before they got on the course. No bib, no run. It seemed like they had found a way to end this great tradition. The marathon pastime was disrupted because of two asshats from Chechnya who somehow convinced the planners that 140 pound runners in short shorts were a security threat. The terrorists had won.


Or so I thought.

Turns out there are some sheisty and crafty individuals out there. Apparently the thing to do for bandits this year was to just buy your own bib number. Ya see a lot of people have been posting their bib numbers on Instagram and other social media outlets. All bandits had to do was just use one of those numbers. Since they didn’t have chips they wouldn’t disrupt the timing and everyone would live happily ever after.

No big deal right?

Well apparently this is the scandal of the freaking century. Evidently you can buy marathon bibs on Craigslist and EBay. Four people apparently did this and were outed by possibly one of the worst “journalists” of all time, some nudnik named Jon Gugala. Yes, Gugala.

Well apparently Mr. Gugala was inspired to publicly shame and encourage a witch hunt against these four individuals after reading a story in Runnersworld about a woman named Kara Bonneau from Durham, NC. She posted her bib on Instagram, and evidently someone out there printed multiple copies of that number and sold them on Craigslist to these four “criminals.” Bonneau only found out about this crime of the century after looking for her pictures online after the race and finding these four vagrants:


Notice they’re all wearing Bonneau’s #14285. Here’s why she was so upset:

“I was really upset because of all races, people work so hard to get into Boston,” Bonneau said. “I have friends who qualified but didn’t qualify by enough time so they still weren’t able to register for the race because it was full.”

Newsflash Kara, these four people worked just as hard as you did to get into Boston too. They didn’t take away anything from you or your friends by running. They didn’t have chips so they didn’t screw up the timers. They got their 50 cent plastic medals, just like everyone else did. They ran the 26.2 miles, just like everyone else did. They could have done the exact same thing on the sidewalk and it would have made absolutely no difference. The fact that you’re whining about this to Runnersworld has exposed you as a whiny, narcissistic marathoner who runs for the praise of her peers.

She wasn’t done:

“They took medals away from people that paid to be there,” Bonneau said. “It’s just not right.”

Hey idiot – they didn’t take medals away from anyone. There wasn’t a single person that crossed the finish line that didn’t get a medal. Obviously they make thousands of extras because they cost 50 cents and it’s the least they can do to guarantee you a medal after running 26.2 miles and coughing up the $200 entry fee.

And this genius also decided to share their pictures on Facebook and get a lynch mob together to find these four:

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So to review…Kara Bonneau ran the Boston Marathon by pre-qualifying and paid her entry fee. She received all the services she paid for on the way and the coveted medal at the end. She literally got everything she paid for. So why the fuck is she mad??? Honestly Kara, stop and think about it for freaking second please. Your life is not affected by this at all in any way. It’s like someone tagged a picture of you on Facebook as someone else. You know it’s not you, so who gives a shit??? You really feel the need to right this terrible injustice? Well congrats because you’ve started a lynch mob:
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The lynch mob that she started figured out the name of one of the girls was Lauren Spinelli. Since then she’s received death threats and has had to shut down her Facebook and Linkedinn accounts after these vigilantes plastered it all over the internet. Too bad they went after the wrong Lauren Spinelli after the real Lauren Spinelli took her social media down:
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For the record I do realize the irony that TurtleBoy Sports outed Margee Pesikov, the girl who made the “Ten Things I Hate About Worcester” video. But there’s a huge difference here. Margee wanted to make herself a public figure because she posted a hateful video on youtube. These people ran 26.2 miles, and did so without any fame. They didn’t even get their names in the official records. They hurt absolutely no one and didn’t deserve this at all.

Based on the commenters you would think that they killed a littler of puppies along the way:

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Yea, last year 3 people were killed at the Marathon, but THIS is the real outrage and disgrace. Priorities people. Priorities.

Newsflash: all four of these people beat you after starting behind you. They deserved to be there. You’re a carpetbagger from North Carolina. This race belongs to them, not to you Dixie raiders like you. Oh yea and guess what? They pay city and state taxes which went to the police, fire and other public services available that day. So they paid for the marathon simply by living here. Out of towners like you should probably pay more than Massachusetts residents.

She’s evidently very proud of what she’s done too:

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But I’m willing to forgive her because she’s a whining carpetbagger from North Carolina who felt like she had more of a right to run the streets of Boston than these four people who live in Boston do. How do I know they live in Boston? Because the asshat known as Jon Gugala started a witch hun on his Deadspin blog:

So four runners decided they’d find alternative means of entry, claiming finishing medals that weren’t rightly theirs.

Why? Because they are probably bastards.

As for Bonneau, she’s shared the bastards’ photos through Facebook. They’ve gone viral, and Big River Running owner Matt Helbig, in St. Louis, Mo., says he’s circulated the picture of the woman wearing his store’s singlet to his employees and through their social media. “I can’t wait to give her a call and have some words with her,” he said.

If you have any information about these four runners, email

Ya see that? That’s what Deadspin calls “journalism.” That’s because the idiots who run that website are a bunch of pompous dooshnozzles who think they are God’s gift to the internet. Asking for people to email tips? I mean, do you think you’re the fucking FBI Jon Gugala? Yea, let’s just write an article that encourages vigilantism and labels four strangers you know nothing about “bastards.” Because that’s respectable journalism.


Also apparently a “bastard” according to this: Bobbi Gibb, Katherine Switzer, Sara Mae Berman, and any woman who ran the race pre 1971.


You know what else is respectable? Trying to get their former coach to feed him their names so he can publish them and send a lynch mob after them. After his vigilance society found out that the two men pictured were on Boston College’s track and country team this past season, he contacted BC’s Cross Country coach and Worcester native Timothy Ritchie. He failed to tell Tim that he was writing an article for Deadspin and that he was on the record, because that’s what you do when you’re not a real journalist:

Ritchie, who coached both athletes formerly, but not currently since they’ve turned to a life of crime, was aware of the situation. In sum, he says the two men were trying to raise money for a friend’s charity, “a good one, at that,” but by the time they would apply for set-aside fundraising bibs through the Boston Athletic Association, the deadline had passed.

Ritchie refused to give names, saying, “I don’t want to do anything that’s going to do anything to these two kids.”

With the BAA’s deadline past, that was the end of two men’s legal means. What they did next remains shrouded in mystery, but probably involves Instagram. “I have no idea,” Ritchie says. “I’m not in daily contact with them.”

Ritchie, himself one of the best half marathoners in the U.S., says he doesn’t know how many other runners were on the underground fundraising team, or if there were other runners with other counterfeit bibs.

“I know those two,” he says. “They’re awesome kids.”

Well, Jon Gugala has since started his own lynch mob against his source:

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So let me get this straight. Dooshnozzle reporter calls up a coach to ask about kids he has no affiliation with any longer. The coach simply says that he, 1) knows them, 2) doesn’t speak to them anymore, and 3) think they’re nice kid to raise money for charity like this.

Well someone around here has to do some actual research, so we did some of our own investigating. We were unable to get a hold of Ritchie, but we were able to contact others associated with BC running. We didn’t ask for the kids’ names because quite frankly it doesn’t matter what their names are, and the people or person we did speak to chose to remain anonymous (for obvious reasons). We had two questions: 1) What they were raising money for, and 2) Why they didn’t just sign up since they could obviously achieve the qualifying time.

Well it turns out the thousands of dollars they raised were for a charity that wasn’t approved by the BAA. Ya see they only do business with scam agencies like the Red Cross, who pay their CEO’s exorbitant salaries and hardly give any money to actual charity. So these kids wanted to raise money for one of their former BC teammates’ whose whose two year old cousin died from a rare form of cancer.  Since there isn’t much research into this form of cancer they wanted to raise money for R&D for it. Savages!!!

They didn’t sign up because they were not aware of this disease until a couple months ago – long after the deadline had passed for signing up for the race. So there ya go Jon – I cracked the case while riding a magical turtle in downtown Worcester. Wasn’t that hard either and it didn’t require a lynch mob.


But keep in mind, we are dealing with a real low life here. Gugala used to be a freelancer for several sites including But at the 2012 marathon he repeatedly tweeted out things that even WE at Turtleboysports would consider sexist. All three sites he contributed towards ended their affiliation with him immediately since he was a giant embarrassment and a loose canon. But Deadspin will take anyone that can get you to click on their blogs by writing defamatory headlines, so he was right up their alley.

Oh yea, and did we mention that Deadspin wrote another column last November in which one of their bloggers told her personal story of banditting the New York City Marathon?

Or how about the fact that Deadspin is constantly writing articles encouraging people to smoke weed, including one entitled, “It’s never too late to start smoking weed.” Not that I’m judging anyone who smokes weed, but how can you honestly pretend to be outraged about people who are “breaking the law” by banditting a marathon, and on the other hand urge people to violate laws they personally disagree with?

Oh yea, and did I mention that Deadspin literally BOUGHT a Hall of Fame vote last year? They offered voter Dan LeBatard money to have their readers choose his ten Hall of Fame votes for MLB this year. I actually respected them for doing that too because I like it when stupid rules are broken. But apparently Deadspin is very selective in their outrage.

Or how about the fact that Jon Gugala completely missed the story about Dennis Crowley, who ran as a registered runner alongside his bandit wife? They ran last year together, but since she didn’t finish because of the bombings so she didn’t have a qualifying time for this year, and banditting was her only option. The husband and wife raised over $5,000 for charity, but some idiot named Kathy Brown snitched on them because…..well I don’t know why she did because it obviously didn’t effect her or prevent her from running. I guess she just felt like being a dooshnozzle.

Check out what other idiots are saying:

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It’s not BLOODY stealing or fraud if the registered runners got to run AND got a medal too. It would be stealing if she was denied these things because of the bandits.

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The only people who got sheisted here were the BAA because they didn’t get an entry fee from these four scofflaws. Of course none of this matters since the race had already reached capacity. So even if they offered them a million dollars to run, the BAA couldn’t accept it. And newsflash to the outraged: the BAA could have EASILY had a confirmation system at the start and the finish to weed out fake bibs. But they didn’t. Don’t hate the player, hate the game.

Gotta love how mad these people are getting about the “stealing” here. If people sneak into a movie that no one is at, it’s not stealing. Even in that situation you could make a case that the movie theater needs ticket sales to pay employees and run the theater. As we said before, paying was not an option for these people. This is the EXACT SAME THING as standing outside of a sold out football game at Auburn High School. There is literally no victim here.

Those people paid for those services whether or not these four people showed up though. They didn’t increase the cost of services, nor did they make the services less available to anyone else. What is it that these people stole from others? If someone steals my car I have no car. You can’t steal a marathon!!!!

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Yes, that’s right, it’s not cheating – “Cheating is the getting of reward for ability by dishonest means or finding an easy way out of an unpleasant situation.”

They received no reward besides the 50 cent medal that they will shortly lose. My question is, what kind of grown ass man or woman gives two shits about a plastic medal? I mean, what will it do besides collect dust? Are you gonna put it in your trophy case? Even the fat bastard who got lost and finished in 8 hours got one, so it literally means nothing except that you finished the race. If you know you finished the race, why do you need a medal to confirm that?

And all these idiots are missing perhaps the biggest point – these 4 bandits RAN 26.2 MILES!!! They didn’t cut the course. They ran the same thing that idiots like Kara Bonneau ran. Unlike Kara though they didn’t do it so they could put their pictures all over Instagram. It was literally the most unselfish thing a person can do.

Oh yea, did I mention she was a Duke fan?


So I guess it’s not her fault. If you go to a school where your basketball coach is a narcissistic jagoff whose players never do anything wrong, you’re bound to be exclusionary by nature.

Check out this stooge’s rationale:

Screen Shot 2014-04-25 at 12.25.14 AMHey moron – if I claimed to have been on the 71 Colts (how old are you by the way?) it could easily be disproven. There were 50-something guys on that team. And if I did start telling people that for whatever reason no one would believe me, because it’s not true. It certainly wouldn’t reduce anyone else’s accomplishments. These people took nothing away from anyone else by doing this.

The bottom line is this – any Tom, Dick, or Dzokhar could have pulled off this stunt. They didn’t benefit from it at all. They didn’t make the race any less safe since they didn’t carry a giant fucking atomic bomb with them for 26.2 miles. They didn’t take away anyone’s medals, no one got hurt, and their were no victims. All this was on the part of Jon Gugala was an attempt to further divide the “running community” from the rest of society. People like him and Kara think they’re God’s gift to fitness and should be put on stage for all of us to cheer them on. Well guess what? People don’t line the Marathon route to root for a bunch of carpetbaggers from North Carolina. They do it to support their friends, family, and other locals who are trying to prove that they can do something amazing for little or no reward. If it weren’t for the fact that a bunch of 20 somethings from BC could jump into this race we would begin to question why we go so out of our way to accommodate this race.

Punk ass kids running 26.2 miles.

Feel free to share your thoughts to keep the conversation going.

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90 Comment(s)
  • July 13, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    Millions of children go missing each year.If people can mobilize over something so foolish, to be invasive and pry into the lives of these strangers all because they ran a frickin race without “permission”, why can’t the focus that same energy on something more important. SMH!!!

  • Gokara
    April 27, 2014 at 10:48 pm

    “two asshats from Chechnya who somehow convinced the planners that 140 pound runners in short shorts were a security threat. The terrorists had won.”

    I would love to know the take by those who were affected directly by the bombings as to your characterization of the bombers as “moron” and “idiot”. So tuttlekid…have you talked directly with one of the persons who lost a limb or a loved one. Do they validate your use of ‘idiot and moron” in reference to these two?

    • April 27, 2014 at 11:27 pm

      Actually yea we were right there when it went off. And I’m sure the victim’s family would probably approve of me calling the people who murdered their families derogatory names. Perhaps you would prefer if I called them freedom fighters or patriots? Sounds like YOU might be a terrorist gokara.

  • Mo
    April 27, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    Is what they did wrong? Sure, they ran a race they didn’t pay for with someone else’s bib number. Should we punish them with death threats and try to ruin their lives? No, where’s the logic in that? Here’s the deal, they didn’t take away from anyone running the race, they all got what they paid for, but they took away from those who qualified and could not race-followed the rules and did not participate. I can see where outrage from runners who were not able to participate come from, but not to the extent of making death threats (by anyone, not just the runners). Maybe they should just be fined for running the marathon without paying, warned that if they do it again there will be stiffer punishment, and be left alone. Also the marathon should just implace a policy for what happens to found out bandits, maybe it would prevent this in the future. And to for any future runners, post your bib number after the marathon, there are obviously idiots out there selling the on the internet for their own personal gain.

  • dulac
    April 27, 2014 at 10:51 am

    No offense, but because you don’t understand the race doesn’t give you the right to judge it. It’s not just a marathon, it’s the holy grail of marathons for runners. That’s what makes it different. Being allowed to run it especially as a qualifier requires years of hard work and dedication. And most of us do work full time jobs, raise kids, and train for years to accomplish the goal of getting a BQ time. It’s taken me 15 years from my first attempt. So because some punk ass kids “wants” to run the marathon and “it’s too hard” to get in it’s OK if they cheat to do so? Also, the majority of those 36,000 runners come from outside Massachusetts, and filled up your city’s hotel rooms, at at your restaurants, and basically pumped several hundred million dollars into your local economy for the weekend. That contributes more to the infrastructure of Boston then a few college students.

    The big issue is these kids were not bandits. Bandits do have a long history, but a bandit is someone running without a race number. Bandits have always taken the chance of getting pulled off the course, and don’t receive the finishers medal (which is not some cheap plastic medal, but a coveted reward for both QUALIFYING and COMPLETING). This was not being a bandit, this was identify theft. No one would question illegality if one of these kids used her SSN to help obtain loan (even if they paid for the loan with their own money) so why is it OK that they used her identity to run the race? “But that’s not the same scale ” you say? That’s like saying it’s not OK to steal $100 from someone but it is OK to steal $5. Identify theft is wrong, no matter the scale.

    • April 27, 2014 at 9:33 pm

      newsflash dude…these BC kids were stud runners in college. the reason they had a hard time getting in the race is because every noob 4:00 marathoner thinks they deserve to run a prestigious race because they “qualified.” If Boston was serious about being an elite race the line would be drawn at 3:00 for men and 3:30 for women. When 36,000 people get in the race how prestigious is it really?

      • Gokara
        April 27, 2014 at 10:00 pm

        Me and Kara Bonneau had a threesome with Jon Gugala. It didn’t last very long.

      • dulac
        April 27, 2014 at 11:16 pm

        Josh, without going into a “why does Boston qualify runners the way they do” argument which is as old as Boston, the race for the fastest runners is called the US Olympic Trials. For a seriously competitive runner, that’s the goal. Boston is different. They want the fastest 20 year olds, the fastest 30 year olds, the fastest 40 year olds, and even the fastest 80 year olds. That’s what Boston is about. I’m not the fastest marathoner in the country, but I’m among the 10% fastest 45-49 year olds.

        And 4 hours won’t get you in unless you’re a 65 year old man or 50 year old woman.

  • Weshley
    April 26, 2014 at 8:24 am

    these kids didn’t earn the right, running 26.2 doesn’t mean you earned the right to run boston. That’s like saying I can tread water so why are you keeping me from my rightful spot on the olympic team

    • Bumper Wolfthorn
      April 26, 2014 at 8:03 pm

      what a terrible, terrible analogy. We are all alittle more stupid after reading your comment..may god have mercy on your soul…

    • Bumper Wolfthorn
      April 26, 2014 at 8:07 pm

      John Gugala gave me herpes…

  • eric clifton
    April 25, 2014 at 10:44 pm

    too bad he used carpetbagger completely backward. a carpetbagger was a northerner going to the south to take advantage of post-civil war upheaval for self-profit. doesn’t actually fit a southerner going north to run a marathon.

    • jsosa
      April 26, 2014 at 12:48 pm

      Carpetbagger, outsider; especially : a nonresident or new resident who seeks private gain from an area often by meddling in its business or politics ..from Merriam-Webster..

    • April 26, 2014 at 9:04 pm

      Actually Eric, you’re a fucking moron. A carpetbagger is one who leaves their home state to move to another state for a personal or political gain. Although it was a common term used during reconstruction for northern politicians who moved south in order to enact radical reconstruction policies, it doesn’t necessarily imply moving from the North to the South. So yea, you’re fucking idiot and so are the 5 morons who up voted you.

      • Gokara
        April 27, 2014 at 10:56 pm

        So TuttleBOY…explain to me how Kara “moved” in order to ‘enact radical reconstruction policies” in respect to the Boston Marathon?

        • April 27, 2014 at 11:25 pm

          She’s from North Carolina who was a temporary visitor in OUR city to run OUR marathon. Bandits are a tradition at the Boston Marathon. Therefore by whining about bandits she is trying to change our policy. I didn’t expect a fucktard like you to be able to connect those giant dots though.

          • April 28, 2014 at 6:50 pm

            Turtleboy you have serious issues. I think you just made people angrier at the bandits.

  • John
    April 25, 2014 at 9:58 pm

    Most likely these four will graduate, move to Nevada, start a ranch, feed their cattle on public lands without paying grazing fees, and then encourage turtleboysports to declare them heroes

  • KB
    April 25, 2014 at 8:38 pm

    I thought it was important for me to note that I am indifferent on this issue (bc obviously everyone’s opinion is valid and important). I see both sides but what readers don’t realize is that Turtleyboy (I typed this wrong but it was too perfect to correct) intentionally overstates his opinion to evoke anger and criticism out of his readers. While you all sit there with your outraged comments, he sits there cackling like a witch. Well like everything else in society, not everyone will learn so keep the comments coming. Cheers!

  • April 25, 2014 at 7:40 pm

    You forgot the second sentence in Wikipedia’s definition (and forgot to cite your source): “Cheating is the getting of reward for ability by dishonest means or finding an easy way out of an unpleasant situation. It is generally used for the breaking of rules to gain unfair advantage in a competitive situation.”

    If you believe that the only “reward” is the 50 cent medal around your neck then you really have not experienced the Boston Marathon. The real reward is the experience; the crowd, the great people of Boston, and the energy. They cheated because they unfairly received that reward over all the other people that wanted to run, but could not because of the competitive nature of the event.

    Plenty of other marathons they could do and plenty of other events they could choose to actually highlight their charity of choice. Regardless I hope that the increased publicity this stunt has generated will raise money and/or positive recognition for their rare cancer. Maybe next year they can qualify (as you say they can easily do) AND raise money for their non-BAA approved charity. Wouldn’t that be something.

  • Sarah Swiss
    April 25, 2014 at 6:34 pm

    Did you speak to a race director before you wrote this? Do you know all that it takes to put on a race or their concern for the safety of the runners and spectators on race day? How would you feel if you were running and something happen to one of the runners who weren’t you and your emergency contact received a call and it WASN’T YOU who was hurt or something worse. I think you should think about that before go and write something like this!

    • Andrew
      May 2, 2014 at 10:25 am

      So the kids were wrong because there was a .1% chance something terrible could happen to them and they would be incapacitated to the point that they couldn’t even speak? Lock em up and throw away the key!

  • Bg
    April 25, 2014 at 6:33 pm

    Who cares! Charities benefited from this everyone raised money there are REAL issues around this Country. A few extra people running 26.2 miles is a really sad thing for anyone to make an issue out of. Could not agree more with this don’t these people have bigger issues to be worried about? Pathetic.

    • Gokara
      April 25, 2014 at 10:55 pm

      Wait,,are you sure charities benefited? Since you seem so sure, I’m sure that you checked all this information. Cause if they didn’t run officially then how do you know? You don’t. You make assumptions. Back your posts with facts from the bandits and then we’ll talk.

  • VeeJay
    April 25, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    It’s simple. Don’t post your bib (or any other personal information) on f/b, instagram or anywhere else that it’s accessible to the masses, then complain when it’s used in ways you don’t like.

    • Blong
      April 25, 2014 at 9:04 pm


      • Gokara
        April 27, 2014 at 8:12 pm

        I am so gay.

  • April 25, 2014 at 3:04 pm

    your points gets clouded with incorrect facts

    Ran Boston as a qualifier & qualified again.

    Don’t care about these bandits or others, it’s a free country and the roads are public.

    And believe it or not, I’m from Boston, fully employed, professional and still find enough time to train.

    Maybe writing shit about all the runners out there isn’t your best bet at getting your 15 second of fame?

  • April 25, 2014 at 2:45 pm

    “regular people from around here simply can’t qualify unless they quit their jobs and become full time runners.” This is complete bullshit! I busted my ass to qualify for Boston while working a fulltime job! Is it difficult, HECK YEAH IT IS! Is it an excuse to run as a bandit? NO!

    • Joey G
      April 25, 2014 at 8:33 pm

      Eddie, it is a major accomplishment and everyone is proud of you. You can forever take solace in the fact that none of these appalling scofflaws had their name in the Worcester Telegram, whereas you did. That is the most important part of the marathon. That and getting a cheap feel from some slightly overweight Wellesley girl who doesn’t complain.

      • Gokara
        April 27, 2014 at 11:03 pm

        Joey G Whiz…again you don’t get it. Have you qualified for Boston? The most important part of the marathon is not your fucking name in some paper for running it. It’s from qualifying in the first place. And your analogy of some feel from a Wellesley girl…well that just makes you a sick and twisted ass. And the three assholes who gave you a thumbsup for glorifying ‘cheep feels”…are right there with you in the lowest of the low. But I’m glad that it is people like you who are defending Tuttleboy…cuse we get a glimpse of what that means. Rock on.

        • Joey G
          April 28, 2014 at 7:46 am

          Yeah… my comment there just propelled me over the Tsarnaev brothers for the lowest of the low. I will wave to everyone while I am hanging out with Judas, Cassius, and Brutus in the 9th circle of hell.

  • Dave P
    April 25, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    Internet outrage is a symptom of narcissistic personality disorder. These four kids banditted the race, while others obeyed the rules, paid money, and supported charities. That being the case, an appropriate emotional response would be slight disappointment, mild annoyance, maybe even tepid frustration. But outrage? You’ve got to have a pretty big ego to flash your outrage around on the internet. Newsflash: you are unimportant, and your emotions don’t matter. If you are able to tone it down, feel free to engage in the pleasantries of casual conversation.

  • AFV
    April 25, 2014 at 2:21 pm

    I want to start by saying that just because something is a tradition doesn’t make it an acceptable practice. Yes, bandits have been part of Boston for a long time, but that doesn’t make it ok. They use resources paid for by the registered runners and pose a potential problem for the medical staff charged with caring for them, should they need care. I don’t know anything about Gugala’s or Deadspin’s journalism skills or standards, so I’ll try to avoid touching on those subjects.

    Saying that simply because no one was hurt or denied a medal (or other resources along the way), no offense really took place is completely missing the point. You’re right that the bandits did not directly take anything from anyone else, as there were enough medals and food and water for everyone. It’s not about the physical resource use. It’s about disrespect for the thousands of people who train their asses off on a yearly basis to qualify for Boston. And you know what? Some never get in. That’s life. It’s not fair. Yes, I’m almost positive that being former members of the BC xc/track team means that these bandits could have easily qualified. But they chose not to do so by the rules. Just because I can do something doesn’t mean I have the right to do it. The qualification/registration rules are in place for a reason. The bandits didn’t follow them. They didn’t run a qualifying race and didn’t register, so why is it ok for them to run?

    “Newsflash Kara, these four people worked just as hard as you did to get into Boston too. They didn’t take away anything from you or your friends by running.”

    The first sentence may or may not be true. You don’t know so don’t state it as fact. The bandits’ participation undermines the work that everyone else in the field did to get in to the race. You may tell me to get down off my soap box, but that’s what people are bothered by. Is anyone really hurt by these people showing up in her photos or getting a finisher’s medal and a cup of Gatorade along the way? No. (And if they are, they too are missing the point) It’s the spirit of the event that’s been violated. Everyone (well almost everyone – not these 4 or any other bandits) who gets to the start line at Boston trained and registered and paid, or raised money according to the rules. Thousands of people prove annually that it’s not that hard to do these things, so why should bandits get a pass? I’m speaking of all bandits, not just these 4, to be clear.

    Was there room for them on the road? Sure. Could they have run on the sidewalk? Sure. But again, that’s completely beside the point. It’s about what the Boston Marathon (more so than other majors I dare say) means to the people running it. As I said before, a lot of people work really, really hard to qualify. Some will never. But that doesn’t make it all right for them to show up and run illegally. They’re subject to the same rules as everyone else and by choosing to ignore them, they’re undermining the whole principle of the event. Do you care if someone steals fruit from the grocery store you shop in? Probably not because it doesn’t affect you. But it does affect the store and its ability to operate. And ultimately, if enough people steal enough fruit, the store might go out of business. And then no one can buy or steal anymore and EVERYBODY loses because of a few who considered themselves above the rules.

    “Newsflash: all four of these people beat you after starting behind you. They deserved to be there. You’re a carpetbagger from North Carolina. This race belongs to them, not to you Dixie raiders like you.”

    Newsflash: How do you know who they beat since their times aren’t in the results? (I know that their times aren’t in the results because there aren’t results for 4 people with bib #14285) That aside, they did not deserve to be there. AGAIN: they didn’t run a qualifying race. They didn’t pay the entry fee. They didn’t raise money for an approved charity. It’s not about simply being faster than Kara. In most cases, there is always someone faster than you and me. But just because they’re faster doesn’t mean they have a right to be in the race. They are subject to the same rules as everyone else.

    I’m not going to touch your Deadspin-related comments since I don’t know anything about journalism. But herein lies a point – don’t go preaching about something you don’t know anything about. Have you ever put on a race? Do you know any race directors? Did you bother to call and ask them why bandits are a problem? It doesn’t seem like it. Before you defend the bandits, you should try to see both sides of the argument.

    “Also apparently a “bastard” according to this: Bobbi Gibb, Katherine Switzer, Sara Mae Berman, and any woman who ran the race pre 1971.”

    I’ll readily admit that in breaking the gender barrier 40+ years ago, banditting was the way to go. But that’s not the case today. The people today aren’t doing it to break through the gender barrier, they’re doing it because they couldn’t didn’t get into the race properly. Too bad. Life isn’t fair. We don’t all get what we want.

    “They didn’t sign up because they were not aware of this disease until a couple months ago – long after the deadline had passed for signing up for the race.”

    That’s very unfortunate. I commend these kids for raising money for charity. I don’t think they they’re bad people for doing what they did. Great people make bad choices all the time. We’re humans. We make mistakes. Their cause sounds like a one that could certainly use more money, but Boston has rules. And while you may not like the charities the race chooses to approve, that doesn’t change the fact that they’re on the approved list for some reason or another (I’m not pretending to know how that approval process works, nor am I defending the charities’ executive pay structure). These bandits didn’t follow those rules either. The right thing to do would have been to donate the money to charity anyways, and then work to get the charity on the approved list for next year. Simply saying “Oh, they were raising money for charity so it’s ok” doesn’t make it ok. Yes, it’s a shame they found out too late. But if the cause means a lot to them, couldn’t they have just asked for money without tying it to the marathon? I recognize doing so makes it more likely that people will donate, but if you care enough about a charity, you can get people to donate by other means.

    “Or how about the fact that Jon Gugala completely missed the story about Dennis Crowley, who ran as a registered runner alongside his bandit wife? They ran last year together, but since she didn’t finish because of the bombings so she didn’t have a qualifying time for this year, and banditting was her only option.”

    I don’t know about missing the story, but if Dennis’ wife didn’t get to finish because of the bombings, then she should have received an entry into this year’s race, like everyone else in the same situation. But I believe Theo Mo has already pointed the reality of the situation out in the comments (his wife was banditting in 2013 as well and that’s why she didn’t receive an entry for 2014).

    “Oh yea and guess what? They pay city and state taxes which went to the police, fire and other public services available that day. So they paid for the marathon simply by living here. Out of towners like you should probably pay more than Massachusetts residents.”

    “Those people paid for those services whether or not these four people showed up though. They didn’t increase the cost of services, nor did they make the services less available to anyone else.”

    You’re right; we registered runners did pay for those services regardless of who else showed up through our race fees. And the bandits didn’t pay for them. Luckily, the bandits didn’t have to use them otherwise they might have taken services away from registered runners. Again, you’re right. It didn’t actually happen. But just because it didn’t happen doesn’t mean it’s ok. It’s clear you’ve never even looked into the logistics of putting on a race. But, if even just you’d spoken to a race director about the problems bandits pose, potential medical liability being one of the biggest, you’d realize this isn’t a valid line of reasoning. Furthermore, tax dollars don’t pay for race day. Municipal authorities have to be hired specifically for closing streets and other duties (this is because they’re not benefitting society as a whole since they’re being used by a specific group). And they’re paid more for those extra duties on race day. It’s not all covered by taxes. A lot of it is paid for by race fees. So the bandits were not, in fact, paying for the services they used. And out of towners like me do pay more than Massachusetts residents. I pay for my hotel in Boston. I pay for food in Boston. Tens of thousands of people (runners, friends and families) do the same. It may not be a direct relationship, but the tourism money that comes into the city of Boston because of this race is a huge benefit to many people. But if that’s not enough and you really want to charge us more through raising the out-of-state race fee, do it. We’ll still come run the goddamn race because that’s not the point. It’s being a part of something with such history and tradition as the Boston Marathon.

    “People don’t line the Marathon route to root for a bunch of carpetbaggers from North Carolina. They do it to support their friends, family, and other locals who are trying to prove that they can do something amazing for little or no reward. If it weren’t for the fact that a bunch of 20 somethings from BC could jump into this race we would begin to question why we go so out of our way to accommodate this race.”

    So you’re saying that the reason Boston accommodates the marathon every year is because a bunch of 20 somethings from BC can jump in? Yes, that’s exactly it. It’s not the fact that this race is the oldest marathon in America. Or that it has more tradition and holds more prestige than any other race in the world. Or that it’s a measuring stick for all marathoners. “Have you run Boston?” has to be the most asked question of a runner as soon as someone finds out you run. And yes, people line the route to root for their friends, but they also line the route to cheer for the 30,000+ people who have trained for months and even years to run this race. For the most part, spectators don’t know who is local and who isn’t. And you know what? They don’t care. If they did, they wouldn’t have cheered for Meb or any of the other leaders as they went by. But the crowds don’t pick and choose. They cheer for everyone because EVERYONE is trying to prove that they can do something amazing for little or no reward. As a runner, I’ve had some of my highest highs come on the Boston course from the crowds. The crowds are like nothing I’ve ever experienced. They are uplifting and energizing and give you goose bumps with every roar. They couldn’t care less if the person they’re cheering for is from Boston or Addis Ababa. They only care that everyone is doing something amazing for little or no reward. So much of the meaning of this race is tied up in the spirit of it. It’s not about the medals, although the importance that people place on these is most likely due to the fact that they serve as a reminder of all of the training that went into that race and the memories from said race. It’s not to show off, it’s a personal reminder of the work you did. Those thousands hours of solitary training that most put in all come to a head on Patriot’s Day. It’s a triumph of the human spirit and everyone wants to share in it for good reason. I’ve bared my soul for this race, because at 20 miles, I’ve got nothing left. I’ve ridden the crowds from there to the finish, just as Meb did on Monday. And while everyone should have a chance to experience that (no matter how deserving), it STILL doesn’t make running as a bandit ok.

    • Blong
      April 25, 2014 at 9:05 pm

      Aaron from Virginia?

    • Rich
      April 26, 2014 at 2:50 pm

      As a Boston and Massachusetts taxpayer let me assure you I’ve paid more than enough for those resources, in fact, I can’t recall the BAA ever paying taxpayers for what they use. Nothing like a 26 mile roadblock keeping regular folks like me from work on what for 90% of the state is a regular work day.

    • dbp36
      April 26, 2014 at 7:11 pm

      It’s all about integrity and bandits, including these four don’t have any.

  • Matt Rowe
    April 25, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    I love how you are essentially endorsing theft. They stole services they didn’t pay for. Also, the medals aren’t plastic. They’re metal. And, Katherine Switzer didn’t bandit. She paid for her entry like everyone else that day.

    • Joey G
      April 25, 2014 at 8:43 pm

      Then I guess the BAA Security Forces should have done a better job of enforcing their supremacy over 26 miles of public roads.

      • Gokara
        April 27, 2014 at 8:14 pm

        Joey, there are LOTs of roads in Boston proper….get over it already

        • Joey G
          April 27, 2014 at 8:48 pm

          There sure are, Gokara… there sure are.

          • Gokara
            April 27, 2014 at 10:04 pm

            And most aren’t marked which means you have to rely on landmarks to steer you…so I guess I should blame the government for that as well

          • Joey G
            April 28, 2014 at 7:48 am

            You can blame the government, sure. You can write a strongly-worded letter to them at the State Bureau of Street Signs and Changing Street Names to MLK Boulevard. Ask for Mr. Fleming, he will help you out.

  • April 25, 2014 at 1:25 pm

    Stay classy.

  • April 25, 2014 at 1:23 pm

    When I read the first article on Deadspin I couldn’t really muster much outrage for the four runners. Maybe there’s a security argument to be made because Boston Marathon v. 2014 is a different beast compared all previous iterations of the Marathon in respect of security. But that seems to be a reach.

    But as absurd as the various Deadspin articles may be, the backlash to the article itself is all kinds of wrong too. Too much invective. And you really needed an editor here.

    You also seem kind of racist.

    • Margee Pesikov
      April 25, 2014 at 2:39 pm

      You can edit me anytime 😉

    • April 25, 2014 at 6:03 pm

      If you thought I was racist by reading a blog with no references whatsoever to race, then you’re obviously a Deadspin reader.

      • April 26, 2014 at 3:08 pm

        It was based on a perusal of your other blog entries.

        • April 26, 2014 at 11:29 pm


        • Joey G
          April 27, 2014 at 8:51 pm

          Like the blog entries that call out bigots and race baiters like Donald Sterling and the Lunenburg foundation painters?

    • oneonta21
      April 26, 2014 at 5:39 pm

      If you are somehow focusing on race in an article that literally didn’t mention anything about race, who’s really the racist?

  • April 25, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    People that are upset by these runners as bandits don’t have a clue what they are talking about. There is no respectable runner who has never banditted a race. Where is the outrage over the runners who bandit Grampa Joe’s Turkey trot? The answer is that there is none. The outrage is fabricated by the combination of taking advantage of a “sensitive” time for the marathon and taking advantage of people commenting on topics they have no clue about. To prove a point, I’ll be banditting the marathon next year.

    • Joey G
      April 25, 2014 at 8:36 pm

      YOU BASTARD!! I previously served as the Executive Vice President of Eligibility for Grampa Joe’s Turkey Trot and we have been looking for you. This is a complete outrage and we will be sending the Grampa Joe’s Turkey Trot Entry Fee Enforcement Department officials to your door. You best come up with the $14.50 AND we want our free turkey back.

  • Gokara
    April 25, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    “Well guess what? People don’t line the Marathon route to root for a bunch of carpetbaggers from North Carolina. They do it to support their friends, family, and other locals who are trying to prove that they can do something amazing for little or no reward.”

    This is the best. In your blog you defend a fashionista from NYC who stole a number from a LOCAL.

    No cred.

  • Dan D
    April 25, 2014 at 12:14 pm

    The fact that this upsets people, is gay.

    • Margee Pesikov
      April 25, 2014 at 3:24 pm

      What does the D stand for?

  • karayourock
    April 25, 2014 at 11:27 am

    I agree with Kara Bonneau. These people are cheats and should be punished. This article is long whiny drivel of dumb arguments. Deadspin is doing the right thing.

    • Joey G
      April 27, 2014 at 2:11 pm

      Yes, let’s implement public hangings for anyone caught running on public roads without the permission of the BAA

      • Gokara
        April 27, 2014 at 8:15 pm

        Again Joey G Whiz…get over yourself on the public roads. I guess you are against parades too…

        • Larry
          April 27, 2014 at 8:54 pm

          I don’t want to stand on the side of the road with thousands of retards and watch some stupid parade.

          • Gokara
            April 27, 2014 at 10:05 pm

            “Retards”. Awesome. I can see why you align yourself with Mr. Carpetbagger.

  • OnlytimeIruniswhenanimalschaseme
    April 25, 2014 at 10:30 am

    Running is only considered a sport because there are so many people who lack the hand eye coordination to play a real one.

    • April 25, 2014 at 1:16 pm

      Its cool bro. A lot of people are jealous of marathon runners. You aren’t the only one.

      • Mike
        April 25, 2014 at 3:12 pm

        Literally nobody is jealour of marathon runners… People either are marathon runners or they aren’t. The “aren’t” group couldn’t care less about the “are” group. The only thing that upsets the people who don’t run marathons is that the people who do insist on talking about it

        • Joey G
          April 27, 2014 at 8:57 pm

          There is nothing more important than running a marathon… except making sure everyone on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, MySpace, Adult Friend Finder, Cougarlife,, Assparade, and Turtleboy Sports knows that you ran a marathon… that and putting one of those stupid 26.2 stickers on your car.

        • Gokara
          April 27, 2014 at 10:07 pm

          What does “jealour” mean…is that like velour…which you probably wear…while you’re watching all the hot marathoners cross the finish line that you never will.

          • Joey G
            April 28, 2014 at 8:14 am

            Not just hot marathoners… hot BOSTON STRONG marathoners.

    • VeeJay
      April 25, 2014 at 3:19 pm

      Love it! At least someone has a sense of humour.

  • gugala
    April 25, 2014 at 10:18 am

    “Waaaaah….Deadspin is better than me. Waaaaaaah!”

    Enjoy your 15 seconds. Obscurity will be calling again very shortly.

    • Margee Pesikov
      April 25, 2014 at 1:42 pm

      Hey there hot stuff, are you available tonight by chance? I think we’d get along real swell. I live in Worcester, look me up!

      • Joey G
        April 25, 2014 at 8:37 pm

        MARGEE!! Are you cheating on me??? Don’t you remember when you let me rub your hairy calves inside of Betty’s???? I am still waiting for you to send me a check to reimburse me for the cover charge by the way. I am sorry that they didn’t believe you were female but… a deal is a deal.

    • April 25, 2014 at 6:05 pm

      Jon Gugala everyone. Thanks for clicking on the blog, reading the entire thing, and then commenting on it. I win.

      Also, you’re a free lancer who writes for a highly trafficked website, yet you have less followers on Twitter than Brian Long. Seek a new career path bros.

      • Blong
        April 25, 2014 at 9:07 pm


    • Joey G
      April 25, 2014 at 8:41 pm

      Don’t you people have NFL team names to complain about, or something? Isn’t there a gay athlete coming out somewhere to whom you can devote 24 hour news coverage? Didn’t you…. oh wait, that is all Deadspin does.

  • CJ
    April 25, 2014 at 10:05 am

    You certainly put a lot of effort into judging the actions of others and calling them derogatory names. How exactly did their actions affect you?

    • Margee Pesikov
      April 25, 2014 at 2:38 pm

      I know, right???? Turtle did the same thing to me! And then I hooked up with him at the Blarney Stone the next weekend. It was sooooooooooooooooooooo hot! Totally!

  • Adam
    April 25, 2014 at 9:54 am

    I was going to leave a comment about the irony of you being upset with a writer who sent a lynch mob after four individuals, when you yourself did something similar with Margee Pesikov. Then I read the blog and realized you already pointed that out and the circumstances are extremely different.

  • Theo Mo
    April 25, 2014 at 9:52 am

    If you’re going to bash another journalist, you might want to check your facts. Chelsa Crowley didn’t miss a qualifying time because the bombing prevented her from finishing. A quick check of the 2013 Boston Marathon entry list (searchable online) shows that she was never registered. She was running as a bandit last year. And if she had been prevented from finishing because of the tragedy (like her husband) she would have been granted automatic entry like the other thousands of runners who couldn’t finish.

    • Joey G
      April 25, 2014 at 8:38 pm

      Wait, your post is unclear. Are you saying that Chelsea Crowley is Boston Strong? Or not Boston Strong?

  • April 25, 2014 at 9:38 am

    Great point in pointing out that Massachusetts residents’ tax dollars actually pay for a good portion of the event. Massachusetts residents should get priority over out of staters.

  • April 25, 2014 at 6:07 am

    me: omg why would someone choose to run 26.2 miles, holy crap I’m tired thinking about that, I’m gonna sit on my couch….what? they were raising money for someones mom and did some graphic design to get in so they could collect the funds they raised and their times won’t even be counted, they are just doing it to do it… well hero status to you my friends..

    the end

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