Portland Marathon cancels 2018 race, dissolves organization

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Portland Marathon board of directors has canceled the 2018 race and plans to dissolve the 47-year-old organization following a state investigation into the group’s operations.

On its website Friday, the board said it was a “difficult and painful decision” to scuttle the Oct. 7 race and that 2,500 race registrants will get a full refund.

The decision comes a week after the marathon’s former director agreed to pay the marathon more than $800,000 to settle an Oregon Justice Department investigation. Authorities said Les Smith or his related companies received hundreds of thousands of dollars in illegal loans from the marathon.

Smith admitted no wrongdoing.

The organization said Friday that its decision to cancel the 2018 race was based on a several factors, including a decline in registered runners and its understanding that city officials wanted changes.