Did This 71-Year-Old Woman Set a Half Marathon World Record in Akron?

Jeannie Rice’s first stop was beating the world record for her age group in the Goodyear Half Marathon & 10K, her next goal is the Berlin Marathon this September. With a half marathon time of 1:37:07, it seems nothing can stop this 71-year-old of Mentor, Ohio. Once her time is verified, Rice will have beaten the previous 70-plus women’s world record of 1:37:38 set by Lavinia Petrie of Australia in 2014.

Running with more than 2,500 athletes ages 11 to 80 from 25 states, Jeannie’s trek towards her record began at 6:30am as energy filled the Goodyear test track where the race started.

“Our races are so much more than running,” states Anne Bitong, Executive Director, Akron Marathon Charitable Corporation. “They thrill, they inspire and even change lives, and today, we were so inspired by our runners crossing that finish line—including Jeannie Rice and her new, unofficial world record.”

The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, in its fifth year as presenting sponsor for this second race in the Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series, provided support with more than 450 Goodyear associates who laced up to run or volunteered at the day’s event.

Every year, Akron Children’s Hospital selects several hero patients to feature along the race routes, highlighting their fighting spirit and inspirational strength. The partnership between the Akron Marathon and Akron Children’s Hospital has raised more than $1.68 million to care for the region’s children since 2016.

“This collaboration with Akron Children’s Hospital and the Akron Marathon is a natural fit for us – as each one of our organizations are focused on serving this community,” said Laura Duda, Goodyear senior vice president of Global Communications.”

This year, more than a dozen hero patients were selected to represent the hospital, as part of its role as the title beneficiary of the Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series. An event favorite for participants was having the opportunity to meet the 2019 honored hero patient from Akron Children’s Hospital, 18-year-old Rybecca Rennie, who was involved in a nearly fatal car accident.

To learn more about this year’s hero patients, please visit bit.ly/ACHero.