ACU endurance athletes believe the bombing in Monday’s Boston Marathon has changed the sport forever.
Two blasts exploded near the finish line a little more than four hours into the race, sending the crowd and exhausted runners into a panic. The explosions killed three people and injured dozens more and caused major cities around the nation to heighten their security.
Jonathan Martin, president of the ACU Triathlon Club, said race organizers will now have to tighten security.
“Every race is going to have to prove their races are safe,” said Martin, junior biology major from San Antonio. “Races with tens of thousands of runners could be obvious targets. The sport of marathon will never be the same.”
Drew Boles, a member in the Triathlon Club, ran the Austin Marathon in February. He said he fears the bombings and the precautions the organizers may take will discourage people from participating.
“It’s already a hassle to get checked into races, and now costs and security could go up” said Boles, junior physics major from Waco. “I don’t think this sport will ever be the same.”
Boles had been training to run in this year’s Boston Marathon with a friend, but he got busy with school and his friend changed his mind, so Boles set his sights on next year’s race.
“The Boston is what every marathoner wants to run at least once,” he said. “I still want to go next year if I qualify, but my parents might have different things to say about that.”
Boles said he hasn’t yet comprehended how tragic the bombings were.
“I still haven’t wrapped my mind around it,” he said. “It’s really sad. I’m still shocked that people died.”
According to a report by Fox News, President Barack Obama and Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel identified the explosions as an act of terrorism. Whether the act was from a domestic or foreign threat remains unclear. Likewise, the FBI and Boston police have no suspects and have not identified a motive.