I sent an e-mail (read below from bottom up) to a person named Richard Rodriguez, who was identified in July on as the race director for the West Wyoming Marathon on its web site. At the time, I had no reason to suspect that West Wyoming wasn't one of Litton's legit marathons. Now I'm not so sure.
Having spoken to a lot of race directors and even to a guy whose business it is to run chip timing at Montana races, I have discovered that the chip mats are incredibly sensitive. One of the officials at the Missoula Marathon told me that he was at the 6am start with a runner's chip that had been found on the ground at the registration area the day before so that he could give it to him at the start. When he couldn't find the runner, he put it in his pocket. Later that day, he was on a scaffolding "sky bridge" over the fiish line helping with the announcing. Even though he was 20' up in the air, the chip mat still recorded multiple finishes of the chip in his pocket every time he moved. From this observation, I am pretty sure that all Litton has to do is get close to the mat and it will register that he crossed.
So I am convinced that Litton has probably used multiple methods to get his chip to register on the chip mats throughout the course. At Missoula, I'm convinced that he simply drove over the chip mats, since the course wasn't closed to traffic.
Here's the e-mail exchange from July with Richard Rodriguez (possible an alias for Kip Litton):
Wow, that's quite a scenario! It would have been very unlikely for the same thing to have happened at our race, as there were only 30 participants and the lead 2 runners ran almost the entire race together. I have not received any complaints. I will keep my ears open though. If there is an update, send it my way. Take care,
Date: Tue, 27 Jul 2010 10:55:44 -0600
Hi - I'm writing to ask about the winner of your marathon a few weeks ago, Kip Litton. He was recently disqualified from the Deadwood Mickelson Trail Marathon for cheating (not running the whole course. He is currently being investigated at the Missoula Marathon, where he apparently finished 6th, but likely did the same thing. I don't know the guy - I just hate cheating in running. I wonder whether he may have had a legitimate performance at your race or whether he may also have cheated in Wyoming.
Perhaps I'll make it down there for the race in a year or two!
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