Moayedi owns and operates a race collection referred to as I Ran Marathons, which levels weekly marathons, half marathons, 10Ks, and 5Ks. Moayedi holds her races on San Antonio operating trails, however she was born and raised in Iran—thus the punny identify of her collection.
Through the years, fellow runners had flagged Moayedi’s habits at a number of high-profile races. In 2013, after logging a suspiciously quick cut up time late in a 100-mile race in Texas, she was disqualified. She was disqualified from the 2016 Houston Marathon after her timing chip did not register splits at a number of checkpoints. Murphy additionally suspected Moayedi did not run all of her personal races, regardless that she’s usually listed within the outcomes, as a way to increase her report numbers. Just a few years in the past, he observed that she was listed within the outcomes of an I Ran marathon in San Antonio on June 1, when her social media account appeared to point she was 8,500 miles away in Nepal, having run a marathon there on Could 29. He alerted Guinness, however officers there reviewed the proof offered and wrote again saying they’d “not discovered any grounds to disqualify her makes an attempt.”
Murphy was undeterred. He was set on proving his case and determined there was just one solution to get her information invalidated: catch Moayedi within the act. He invited me to return alongside.
On February 16, 2019, I met Murphy at 6 am at a resort in San Antonio. I might been speaking to him on the cellphone, however this was our first in-person encounter. Murphy, who has close-cropped, receding grey hair and a little bit of a paunch, was dressed for the event in black Nike operating shorts and a grey Beneath Armour sweatshirt. We made our solution to the race website and crouched behind a parked minivan, slinking round like a few middle-aged Hardy Boys, then fastened our eyes on a dozen runners who had gathered at a trailhead. They had been standing close to a inexperienced, white, and crimson banner that learn I RAN MARATHONS START/FINISH.
“That is her within the black coat,” Murphy whispered, pointing to a brief girl with curly grey hair wearing black monitor pants, puffy coat, and baseball cap. “She positively does not appear to be she’s dressed to run a marathon.”
The run started at 7:30, however Moayedi did not be a part of the racers as they ambled off. Murphy walked over to the beginning line, the place a number of copies of her self-published e-book, Iran to America, had been displayed on a folding chair, on sale for $20. He picked up a replica and commenced flipping by way of it.
Moayedi approached us and Murphy greeted her with a cheerful “You probably did all this!” as he held up her e-book describing her record-setting runs. “You are a legend! Can I get my image with you?” This struck me as a clumsy transfer, however I performed alongside, snapping a photograph of Murphy and Moayedi.
Two days after the San Antonio occasion, race outcomes had been posted on the group’s web site. Although we would seen no proof that Moayedi left the beginning space, she was listed because the Tenth-place finisher, with a time of seven hours, 29 minutes.
Murphy despatched an e mail to Moayedi telling her what we witnessed and questioning her Guinness information. Moayedi did not reply. I additionally reached out to her, many occasions, by e mail, voice message, and likewise licensed letter. I needed to listen to her aspect of the story, however she by no means answered.
Murphy contacted Guinness once more. The group responded with an almost an identical e mail to the one Murphy acquired a number of years earlier than; there could be no disqualification. In late April, Murphy reached out to a different Guinness worker, an adjudicator who, Murphy says, is perhaps extra severe about getting outdated information invalidated.
I questioned if he was obsessing an excessive amount of over Moayedi. In spite of everything, she was doing good for well being and well-being, and her race collection allowed informal runners to check out lengthy races with out a lot strain. “At what level do you simply let it go?” I requested.