This will be the eighth year anniversary of Pace Groups at the Oakland Marathon! Last year, over 200 participants signed up for the Pace Groups

The Pace Groups will help you not only achieve your goals, but have FUN, whether the goal is a personal record, Boston qualifier, or simply to cross the finish line! Our Pacers are extremely experienced runners, chosen based upon their previous running and/or pacing performances and know what it takes to hold a steady pace and give you a great marathon experience – dynamic and personable, and dedicated to making sure you have a great time on the course!

Important Highlights about Pace Groups:

  • Participation is free to all participants who sign up at the pre-race expo booth on 3/19/16. Registration includes completing a release of liability waiver and in return you will be given a pace bib to wear on your back to help identify you to your pacers and group. In addition, you will be given a temporary pace band (while supplies last) to wear on your forearm which will alert you of your specific mile goals. THERE WILL BE NO MARATHON DAY SIGN UP FOR PACE GROUPS.
  • We will have Pace Groups for the following marathon times: 3:10, 3:20, 3:30, 3:40, 3:50, 4:00, 4:15, 4:30, 4:45, and 5:00.
  • The goal is that Pacers will be running “even splits,” which means that every mile will be run at approximately the same pace. Exceptions to this will be in the beginning due to the bottleneck at the start and on the miles which may be slightly hilly. Most of the GEICO Pace Groups will not be walking during the marathon. (Traditionally, the pace groups from 4:00 and slower will be walking during fluid stations and specifically the 4:45 pace group will have pacers who run the marathon and pacers who do a run-walk modified version of the marathon for that pace.)
  • To meet up with the Pace Groups on marathon day, look for them at the start, holding up large signs with the pace group finishing times printed on them, and wearing Pace Group shirts. Try to meet up with your group twenty minutes before the start (7:10 a.m.).
  • Five or ten minutes before the start, your Pacers will give their “final instructions”. This will include any adjustments being made to the pace due to course conditions, as well as your Pacers’ method of meeting back up and keeping the group together at the fluid stations. This is another great opportunity for you to ask any questions you may have!
  • Fluid station philosophy, regarding whether the Pace Group will walk or run through it, is up to the Pacer(s). Each Pace Group will let their team know their strategy for getting back together after a water stop. Traditionally, the pace groups from 4:00 and slower will be walking during fluid stations. Be sure to check with your Pacer at the expo booth or prior to the race if this is extremely important to you.
  • We want you to run your own race. If you feel great on race day, and you want to go ahead to catch the next team, we’ll cheer you on. If it’s just not your day, slow down and wait for the next Pace Group behind to catch you. And if you want to just fall in and match strides with your Pacer, we sure will appreciate the company!
  • If you have any questions, please feel free to post them on the ORF Facebook page. This will allow others to share the questions and answers. Or you may e-mail the Pace Group Organizer at [email protected].

Meet the 2018 Pacers

Full Pacers

3:20:00

James Balagot
For James, running started as an ‘acquired taste’ and has evolved into an addiction. Today, it’s part of his daily morning routine.

Weekends are for long runs and over the past 5 years he has paced over 20 marathons. You can count on James for consistent splits.

 

Don Wang
Don is veteran runner and has paced many marathons. He is returning to pace his 5th Oakland Marathon.

3:10:00

 Karl Schnaitter
Karl’s passion has been ultramarathon running for the past ten years, but he enjoys all terrains and distances. Karl is excited to be pacing the Oakland Marathon for the first time.

3:30:00

Tzach Segal has been running since his high school days. He has paced SF marathon and  the Morgan Hill marathon for the last 5 years. Tzach has participated in different long distance races and in the last 2 years has been focused on long distance triathlons. Tzach completed 3 ironman races in Coeur d’Alene and Arizona. Tzach is looking forward to running with you and helping you achieve your goals!

Liang ran his first marathon at the 2015 Oakland Running Festival (ORF) and finished at 3:54. He followed the 3:50 group paced by Linh/Beth and was inspired by these two pacers on how runners can help each other. After his first ORF, he set his goal of becoming a 2016 ORF pacer to help others achieve their marathon goals. His marathon PR was set at his second marathon (2015 CIM) finished at 3:10. Liang is looking forward to running with you and pacing you across the finish line.

Bradley Fenner
Bradly is a veteran pacer for the Oakland Marathon. He will get you up the hills and through the flats and to your goal time.

3:40:00

Rick Soper
Rick has run the Oakland Marathon 3 times and the Oakland Half Marathon 5 times. He knows these streets well. He has pacing experience with the Lake Merritt Joggers and Striders and the TriValley Running Club.

Yiquan
Yiquan is returning to pace the 3:40 group through a smooth run through Oakland. He has paced this group since the first Oakland marathon and looks forward to sharing his experience with you.

3:50:00

Roni Kornitz
Roni has been running marathons since 2004, completed so far 145 marathons. He has been pacing marathons and half marathons since 2009, paced so far 60 runs. Roni is a permanent member of the Oakland pacer team. He has paced every Oakland Marathon, at the 3:50 pace.

World Marathon Majors history: Roni ran Boston Marathon every year since 2012, Chicago Marathon every year since 2013, New York Marathon in 2013 and 2015, Tokyo and Berlin Marathons in 2015. In 2015 Roni ran 5 of the 6 majors – missed London.

In March 2014 Roni ran 3 marathons in 3 continents in one week (Barcelona, Jerusalem and Oakland).

His favorite run is The Relay – He ran it as the captain of Runners Anonymous team 10 times since 2005, and starting 2009 Runners Anonymous team is also running Lake Tahoe Relay every year.

Roni has been a coach of Run365 (San Francisco Marathon training program) from 2011 until 2015.

Ambassador history:

–          The San Francisco Marathon Ambassador in 2012.

–          Oakland Marathon Ambassador in 2015-2016.

–          Abbott World Marathon Majors Ambassador in 2016.

When Roni is not running – he is SCUBA diving and homebrew beer.

 

Ofer Kadar
Ofer has been a long distance runner for over 20yrs ,completing 12 road and trail marathons , numerous 50K’s and recently a 50M. Ofer has paced 6 marathons including 2 Oakland Marathons. Other than running after his kids, Ofer enjoys trail running with friends, working on carpentry projects and homemade gadgets.

Looking forward to help you achieve your race goals !

4:00:00

Simone Angela Winkler
Simone is an avid ultrarunner in the Bay Area! She has paced several races and can’t wait to help you with your running goal at the Oakland Marathon! When not running, Simone is a professional photographer and biomedical engineer!

Hanoch Raviv
Hanoch is an ultramarathon runner with numerous 50Km and 3x 50M. He has been pacing Oakland marathon since it’s inception in 2010. Pacing is an opportunity to socialize with runners, to motivate new marathoners and experienced marathoners to get to the finish line.

4:15:00

Dan Tischler
Oakland was Dan’s first marathon in 2014. Since then he has run it every year, including as a pacer in 2017. Dan can’t wait to hit the road again at the 2018 Oakland Marathon and help runners have a great time achieving their goals.

Shaun Enderton
Shaun enjoys traveling and running and has completed 12 marathons and 34 half marathons in 9 different states. He loves the social aspect of running and prefers to run without any technology. He’s been fast, slow and everywhere in between but knows that everything is relative and the achievement of personal
aspirations is more valuable than any medal. He looks forward to meeting you and helping you achieve your running goals.

4:30:00

Sam Louie
Sam has paced marathons in PA,SC,AR,GA and a bunch in CA. One of his favorite CA marathons to pace is Oakland. Good parking, race support and a beautiful grass area to socialize at the finish. His motto “If you are not having fun, you might be doing something wrong”

Ed Nanale
Ed is a proud Oakland resident and this will be his sixth consecutive year running the ORF Marathon. This is definitely his favorite race and he has many wonderful memories from past races: great volunteers, families offering snacks from their front yard, running through the arch of fire, cheering crowds and the musicians along the way. If you’re up early enough, you can catch him running around Lake Merritt before dawn.

Jennifer Stringham
Jennifer Stringham is a track coach for Run 365. She has been running in the bay area since 2009. She has paced Oakland marathon, San Francisco marathon, and Berkeley Half. Along with pacing for Run 365. Jennifer also has a great passion for trails and has several ultra races under her belt. When not running Jennifer is a social worker serving the United States Veterans in
collaborative courts.

4:45:00

Allison Espejo
Allison has been running marathons since the Honolulu Marathon in 2002. She recently ran the 3-day Grand Circle Trailfest which consisted of Bryce Canyon, Zion and the Grand Canyon. She’s paced many full and half marathons, and belongs to the 50 States Marathon Club. She enjoys pacing to help others reach their running goals.

Paul Tran
Paul began running in high school as a sprinter in track in the late 1990s, competing in distances ranging from 100 meters to 400 meters. In recent years he converted to distance running, completing ultramarathons and qualifying for Western States multiple times. He completed his first 100 mile ultramarathon (Rio Del Lago) in 2015 and aspires to complete his first 200 mile ultramarathon in the coming years. Paul has paced various races such as the San Francisco Marathon, Morgan Hill Marathon, Berkeley Half Marathon, and Brazen Western Pacific Marathon.

5:00:00

Hoang Ngo
Hoang started running around the time when her kids were old enough to drive themselves to school. Her very first run was a 5K in early 2009, followed by the San Jose Rock and Roll in October 2009. Since then, she’s already ran 100+ half marathons, 50+ marathons, and various 50K’s, 50-milers and a 100-miler. In addition to the running, she’s also a triathlete, having completed the Vineman Full (Ironman distance) and IM Texas — one of the top 5 most difficult Ironman courses. Lately she just completed the Trailfest- she loves the 3 days running in 3 National Parks: Zion, Grand Canyon and Bryce
Canyon. Trailfest was amazing!!! Hoang has now been pacing races and takes pride in helping other runners achieve their personal goals. She also loves to assist nonrunners in becoming just as active, and having them learn to
appreciate running just as much as she does.

Sara Kurth
Sara is a runner and an RRCA certified running coach who has completed 27 road and trail marathons, and paced many marathons and half marathons in the Bay Area. She has also been a coach and pacer for the Lake Merritt Joggers and Striders Oakland Marathon training program for the past 5 years, and is a blogger at sarakurth.com, writing about all things running and marathoning.

Half Pacers

1:35:00

 David Yott
David is excited to pace his second Oakland Half Marathon on this flat, fast course. David finished his first half marathon in 2007 and has since run numerous distance races and is a three-time Boston Marathon qualifier. His goal for the 1:35 group is to start out the first mile at a nice and easy 7:15 pace and then repeat for 12+ more miles.

1:45:00

Pei Li
Pei has paced/raced 30+ full & half marathon since he started running ~4 years ago, with a full marathon PR of 2:59:56(set in 2015 CIM). He enjoys running & enjoys pacing even more(yes, he paced more events than he raced :-). He ran his 1st ORF in 2014, and was going to pace for the 2015 ORF event, but had to withdraw due to injury. He’s very happy to be back for the 2016 event, and look forward to seeing many fellow runners and helping them reach their marathon goals.

2:00:00

Allegra Kim
Allegra started running marathons in 1998 and has run or paced every Oakland Marathon since 2011. She is a pacer for the Lake Merritt Joggers and Striders’ Oakland Marathon training program, and has also paced the Santa Rosa Marathon, See Jane Run Half Marathon, and Zooma Half Marathon. She is looking forward to pacing runners to a strong finish while enjoying a tour of Oakland.

Jim Moxon
This native Oaklander can’t wait to pace you to your 2:00 finish and point out some sights along the way. He is returning to pace his 3rd Oakland half.

2:10:00

Maricar Montano
Maricar is excited to pace her 2nd Oakland Half. She has been pacing half marathons for more than a year and the best part is being part of someone’s journey as they cross the finish line. She ran her first half marathon almost 5 years ago and has worked up to completing 3 marathons, with a 4th one on the way this spring.

Mary Beth Kierstead
Mary Beth has paced run every Oakland Marathon or 1/2 marathon since its inception. She loves Oakland, knows the course and will guide you to a smooth, consistent 13 miles at a 9:54 pace.

2:20:00

Kate Stewart
Kate has been a Pace Group Leader for the LMJS/ORF training group since the very first year of the Oakland Marathon. She has run both the marathon and the half marathon in Oakland, and paced the half last year. Too much fun, so she is back to do it again!

Yavanna Reynolds
Yavanna has been running with LMJS since 2010 and pacing with the Oakland Marathon since its third year. She has been the 2:20 half pacer for the event every year since half pacers were officially added. Perpetually perky, Yavanna is known for her steady pace and positive disposition. She’s glad to be back again pacing her favorite race at her favorite speed and looks forward to meeting you all at the start and along the way.

2:30:00

Debbie Espejo
Debbie has been running ever since she completed the 2005 New York City Marathon. She enjoys races in the bay area, having lived here most of her life. She has paced the Hot Chocolate 15k in San Francisco and is also a race ambassador for Represent Running. The 2018 Oakland Running Festival will be her first time to pace a half marathon and she’s looking forward to getting you to that finish line in 2:30!

Michele Jordan
Michele has been running for 17 years, paced Oakland and SF and run several marathons and half marathons. She keeps a steady pace and a good attitude. She is looking forward to running with you!

2:40:00

Michael Espejo
As a Bay Area native, Mike is looking forward to pacing and taking part in Oakland’s 1/2 Marathon. He is no stranger to running. Accomplishments have consisted of the Vineman 1/2 Ironman. More recently, Mike ran the NYC Marathon followed by his 1st international marathon in Taiwan: The Inaugural Penghu Cross- Sea Marathon. He is thrilled to be pacing alongside siblings in his own backyard.

Nnenna Okezie
Nnenna fell in love with distance running when she moved to the East Bay. With the help of LMJS, she trained for her first half marathon, ORF and her first marathon seven months later. Nnenna has run many half marathons in the Bay Area and has been a half marathon pacer for Santa Rosa, Napa, ORF, SEE JANE RUN, and Alameda Running Festival. She enjoys supporting fellow runners and the inspiration they bring. Make sure to say hello and share your running inspiration with her <3

1:50:00

Nayeli Reyburn
Nayeli began running in her late 30s and remembers not being able to run a mile. She is now prepping to run marathon #14, Chicago, in the fall to complete her goal of running all The Big Ones: SF, LA, Boston and NYC. Nayeli is excited to pace Oakland again.

Beth Carter
Beth Carter is an avid distance runner starting her 28th year of running. She’s been formally pacing half and full marathons since 2013, including 3 times at Oakland! Her motto is “any time, any place, any weather, any pace”