After my race today (spoiler: it sucked!), I stayed around to watch a friend finish the full. She was killing it, on pace for a 3:07, and I wanted to see her kick butt!
While I waited with friends at the finish, I saw the first female finisher. She came in at 2:49:xx, accompanied by two pace bikes. The announcer called out her name and told us she was from Gonzales, Louisiana, and a bunch of people cheered for a local winner (Gonzales is near Baton Rouge, where the race was held). Af far as I know, she broke the tape - I didn't actually see that, but the announcer introduced the two holders of the tape (local bigwigs), and I saw the tape stretched out.
But anyway. Not another peep from the announcer, and lo and behold, right around 3:07, up comes my fast friend, with her two bike pacers (with "second female" signs) and we all cheer like mad as she finishes!
No tape or anything. Because she's second. Right? Wrong. As we met her at the chute, the race officials were like, "Sorry, she can't stay, we have to get her to Press, she won." And sure enough, they bundle her over to the TV cameras for an interview, and we are just all baffled.
All of us SAW the other woman finish. All of us HEARD the announcer. But no, instant results online show my friend as the overall winner.
So what happened? And WHY DID SOMEONE STEAL MY FRIEND'S THUNDER?!
She didn't get the "first female" cheers, bike pacers, or tape. I don't know what happened yet, but I am guessing that the woman who finished first either registered for the half, or ran under another woman's bib. I can't imagine that she got off-course or cut the course; she would have told her pacers (or they would have told her!).
But my question is, why didn't the race officials inform the announcer, who could have simply said, "We received word that the first female finisher was disqualified, so ladies and gentlemen, here comes our women's winner!" Instead, she got called as the second woman. But obviously the race directors already knew about it, since they grabbed her immediately in the chute and told us (and her) that she was the winner. It just...seems so unfair. I wish she'd had her winner's moment!
Hopefully I find out what actually happened, and when I do, I'll report back!