This Ross Student Just Ran a Marathon in Nearly World-Record Time While Wearing a 3-Piece Suit

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Joe Stamper, MBA ‘17, is about to cross the graduation stage later this week with 400 of his classmates. But, before he marks that milestone, he wanted to cross one other thing off of his B-school to-do list: run a marathon. In a business suit. And try to break a world record.

No problem!

Stamper, center, with his Guinness World Record
witnesses (also in suits)

Training for a marathon is no easy task while you’re finishing up an elite MBA program, let alone when you’re trying to do it in a suit, in a faster time than anyone else has ever done it.

But when Stamper crossed the finish line at the Martian Invasion of Races Marathon this past weekend in Dearborn, MI, maize and blue tie flapping in the wind over his shoulder, he was just a short few minutes off the world record pace of 2:58:03.

"The marathon is a truly unique race,” Joe said following the race. “At a certain point, your focus changes from gunning for a certain time to just aiming for completion. From that point until crossing the finish line, it was just a battle of wills."

The suit he wore was specially designed by Ministry of Supply, and pre-approved by the Guinness Book of World Records as meeting their requirements. The suit consisted of pants with a belt, a buttoned up dress shirt, a tie, a waistcoat or vest, and a jacket.

If you’re wondering, Guinness allowed him to wear standard running shoes rather than a pair of Florsheims. And for its part, Joe said the suit performed incredibly well. “I’ve had more sweat stains coming out of internship interviews,” he said.

His 3:03:46 finishing time would qualify him for prestigious races like the Boston Marathon, but Joe said this will likely be his only attempt at the world record for now.

So until inspiration strikes again, it’s back to wearing the suit at the office — Joe starts full time with Microsoft as a Product Marketing Manager in July.

“Thanks to everyone who helped make this fun project a reality,” Joe said. “I couldn’t have done it without the support of my friends, family, the RF Events staff, and the Ministry of Supply.”

Congratulations to Joe on his graduation and an impressive showing this past weekend! Go Blue!

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