Runner's disappearance prompts changes in AK race

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A rookie's disappearance during a popular extreme race on Alaska's rugged Mount Marathon has led to significant new rules in the event.

Among changes, runners in the July Fourth race must make it halfway up the mountain in an hour or they will have to turn around.

The 900 participants registered for this year's race also must sign a statement saying they've already completed the treacherously steep race course.

The Anchorage-based Alaska Mountain Runners nonprofit will hold two training runs on Mount Marathon June 22 and June 29.

The changes were prompted by the disappearance last year of 65-year-old Michael LeMaitre (lah-MAYT'), who was lagging behind in his first time tackling the mountain. No trace of the Anchorage man was ever found despite numerous searches.

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