Hollywood Local News

27,000 runners expected for 35th L.A. Marathon

LOS ANGELES — Jean-Michel Dobaria will be one of an estimated 27,000 runners who will take part in the Los Angeles Marathon presented by Asics March 8. 

Born and raised in Paris, Dobarai got interested in running after he moved to Koreatown and joined the Koreatown Running Club. Last year’s Los Angeles Marathon was his first. Since then, he also has run marathons in Honolulu and Chicago. 

Dobaria and the other runners will travel the 26.2-mile Stadium to the Sea course that begins at Dodger Stadium and ends in the city of Santa Monica near the beach. This is the 11th consecutive year the Stadium to the Sea course has been used.

This will be the 35th L.A. Marathon. The race was first held in 1986, hoping to grow from the success of the Marathon in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.

Last year’s race was won by Elisha Barno, who passed fellow Kenyan John Korir in the final 200 yards to win the closest men’s race in the event’s history.

Askale Merachi of Ethiopia set a course record to capture first place in the women’s race.

Barno completed the course in two hours, 11 minutes, 45.54 seconds. Korir finsiehd in 2:11:52.29. 

Merachi finished in 2:24:11.83, breaking the previous course record of 2:25:38 set by Edna Kiplagat of Kenya in 2010. 

The marathon route for 2020 will guide runners into the city of West Hollywood along Sunset Boulevard at Marmont Lane, just west of Crescent Heights Boulevard. From the Sunset Strip, runners will turn left (south) onto San Vicente Boulevard; then right (west) on Santa Monica Boulevard; then left (south) onto  Doheny Drive, where they will enter the city of Beverly Hills at Beverly Boulevard. 

“Experiencing the city of West Hollywood at a runner’s pace is a fantastic way to spend a Sunday morning,” West Hollywood Mayor John D’Amico said. “It’s seems obvious to me that the best 1.5 miles of the 26.2-mile L.A. Marathon course is the part in West Hollywood. 

“You might want to riff with the music cats on the Sunset Strip or have a two-Bloody-Mary brunch with your pals on Santa Monica Boulevard.”

To ensure the safety of the large numbers of marathon runners, there will be several street closures in West Hollywood from 4 a.m. to 2 p.m.; crews will work to reopen roads to vehicle traffic as quickly as possible after the race.

Among the closures are: Sunset Boulevard between Marmont Lane and San Vicente Boulevard; San Vicente Boulevard between Sunset Boulevard and Melrose Avenue; Santa Monica Boulevard between La Cienega Boulevard and Doheny Drive; Doheny Drive between Santa Monica Boulevard and Beverly Boulevard, where the route exits West Hollywood and enters Beverly Hills.

Parking will be strictly prohibited along the Los Angeles Marathon route. “No Parking” signs will be posted prior to the event. Vehicles in violation will be ticketed and towed at the owner’s expense.

Los Angeles Marathon spectators and community members who are searching for alternative parking solutions in West Hollywood during the Los Angeles Marathon are encouraged to visit West Hollywood’s website, where a directory of parking structures and municipal lots with hours of operation and rates is available online at www.weho.org/parkinglots

Members of the public are encouraged to carpool and to use public transportation, taxis, or ridesharing options.

Independent Staff Report