Half-marathoner Meredith Fitzmaurice could well be dubbed the Canadian Forrest Gump after she took a wrong turn and ended up winning the whole race.
The 34-year-old was only supposed to complete 13.1 miles in Sunday’s “Run for Heroes” in Ontario in preparation for the longer race in Detroit next month.
But a moment of madness saw her mistakenly running the wrong way and onto the course for the full 26.2 miles.
Fitzmaurice, who was “in the zone,” said she realized something was wrong only when — after one hour and 28 minutes — she couldn’t see the finish line.
A race director riding alongside her on a bike informed her she was in fact on track to finish the entire race.
“The guy was awesome,” she told the Windsor Star. “And once he said I was good to go, my adrenaline just kicked in.”
Incredibly, Fitzmaurice was the first woman — and tenth person overall — to complete the run, and she did it in a fast time of 3:11:48.
“I didn’t even realize I was the first female until people started yelling at me and high-fiving me,” she said.
“Once I crossed the finish line and realized the magnitude of what I had done, I started crying,” she added.
Fitzmaurice, who had never run more than 20 miles in one go before, said she now plans to run the Boston Marathon next year.
NY Daily News
Usually a mistake cost you, but not in Meredith’s case. Though she took a wrong turn, you needed stamina, strength and tenacity to get the job done, and she did it. Congratulations!