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Boston Marathon History: 1976-1980

 

80th Boston Marathon - Monday, April 19, 1976

The race was almost over before it began. America’s bicentennial year provided the hottest race conditions ever at Boston. The “run for the hoses,” as the 1976 race became known, was held in 100-plus-degree temperatures and forced more than 40 percent of the 1,942 starters to exit prematurely. Jack Fultz, a 27-year-old undergraduate at Georgetown University, survived the oppressive conditions to finish first in 2:20:19. Kim Merritt from Racine, Wisconsin, led the women in 2:47:10.

Men's Top Results

1. Jack Fultz (VA). 2:20:19
2. Mario Cuevas (MEX) 2:21:13
3. Jose DeJesus (PR) 2:22:10
4. Jack Foster (NZL) 2:22:30^
5. James Berka (MN) 2:24:32
6. Eduardo Pacheco (PR) 2:25:11
7. Mike Burke (MA) 2:26:11
8. Ron Kurle (CA) 2:26:21
9. Donald Slusser (PA) 2:26:38
10. David Fiskin (NZL) 2:26:43

Women's Top Results

1. Kim Merritt (WI) 2:47:10
2. Michiko (Miki) Gorman (CA) 2:52:27^
3. Dorothy Doolittle (TX) 2:56:26
4. Gayle S. Barron (GA) 2:58:23
5. Nancy Kent (PA) 3:00:53
6. Marilyn T. Bevans (MD) 3:01:22
7. Claire Spawei (NTH) 3:04:46
8. Harue Yamamoto (JPN) 3:05:36
9. Lisa Lorrain (GA) 3:11:01
10. Liane Winter (GER) 3:12:44

 

81st Boston Marathon - Monday, April 18, 1977

Canadian Jerome Drayton, third in the 1974 race, hooked up early in a duel with 1975 champion Bill Rodgers. However, as the 77-degree heat began to take its toll on Rodgers, Drayton pulled away past Wellesley Hills and went on to defeat a record field of 2,766 starters in 2:14:46. This was Drayton’s fifth Boston attempt and he became the first Canadian to win Boston since the 1948 triumph of Gerard A. Cote. Miki Gorman led the women once again with her finish of 2:48:33.

Men's Top Results

1. Jerome Drayton (CAN) 2:14:46
2. Veli Bally (TUR) 2:15:44
3. Brian Maxwell (CA) 2:17:21
4. Ron Wayne (CA) 2:18:18
5. Vinnie Fleming (MA) 2:18:37
6. Tom Fleming (NJ) 2:18:46
7. Gary Tuttle (CA) 2:19:42
8. Chris Berka (CA) 2:19:48
9. Jack Fultz (PA) 2:20:44
10. Russell Pate (SC) 2:21:16

Women's Top Results

1. Michiko (Miki) Gorman (CA) 2:48:33^
2. Marilyn T. Bevans (MD) 2:51:12
3. Lisa Lorrain (GA) 2:56:04
4. Gayle Olinek (CAN) 2:56:55
5. Ann Forshee (MI) 2:58:54
6. Lisa Matovcik (PA) 2:58:54
7. Joan L. Ullyot (CA) 3:01:04
8. Penny DeMoss (CA) 3:01:16
9. Jennifer White (VA) 3:03:33
10. Sally Sullivan (CT) 3:03:46

 

82nd Boston Marathon - Monday, April 17, 1978

Bill Rodgers was back in fine form, but he had to hold off a fast-closing Jeff Wells to win by two seconds. Rodgers finished in 2:10:13, with Wells at 2:10:15, in the race’s closest finish to that date. Television sportscaster Gayle S. Barron led the women’s field in 2:44:52. The race was the fastest mass finish at Boston (and perhaps anywhere) as 2,076 runners broke the three-hour barrier, a mark that would be shattered the following year.

Men's Top Results

1. Bill Rodgers (30, MA) 2:10:13*+
2. Jeff Wells (23, TX) 2:10:15
3. Esa Tikkanen (23, FIN) 2:11:15
4. Jack Fultz (28, MA) 2:11:17
5. John (Randy) Thomas (24, MA) 2:11:25
6. Kevin Ryan (30, NZL) 2:11:43
7. Don Kardong (29, WA) 2:14:07
8. John Lodwick (24, TX) 2:14:12
9. Yutaka Taketomi (24, JPN) 2:14:34
10. Tom Fleming (26, NJ) 2:14:44

Women's Top Results

1. Gayle S. Barron (30, GA) 2:44:52
2. Penny DeMoss (28, CA) 2:45:36
3. Jane Killon (29, NY) 2:47:33
4. Kim Merritt (22, WI) 2:47:52
5. Laurie Pedrinan (34, NY) 2:48:42
6. Kiyoko Obata (25, JPN) 2:52:34
7. Ellie DeMendonca (33, MA) 2:52:49
8. Linda Susan Donkelaar (24, AZ) 2:52:58
9. Nancy Linday (29, NY) 2:53:07
10. Gayle Olinek (25, CAN) 2:53:20

 

83rd Boston Marathon - Monday, April 16, 1979

Bill Rodgers established a course and American best of 2:09:27 - the fourth-fastest time in the history of the sport - to collect his third triumph. Rodgers ran away from Japan’s Toshihiko Seko on Heartbreak Hill. Robert Hodge, a Greater Boston Track Club teammate of Rodgers, finished third in 2:12:30 as the GBTC placed four runners in the top 10 (Randy Thomas and Richard Mahoney were the others). Bowdoin College student Joan Benoit led the women’s field with a surprising American women’s record performance of 2:35:15. A record 7,927 runners entered the race, including 3,031 who broke 3:00:00; 282 who broke 2:30:00; and 51 who broke 2:20:00.

Men's Top Results

1. Bill Rodgers (31, MA) 2:09:27*+
2. Toshihiko Seko (22, JPN) 2:10:12
3. Robert Hodge (23, MA) 2:12:30
4. Tom Fleming (27, NJ) 2:12:56
5. Gary Bjorklund (27, MN) 2:13:14
6. Kevin Ryan (31, NZL) 2:13:57
7. Bobby Doyle (28, RI) 2:14:04
8. Randy Thomas (25, MA) 2:14:12
9. Herman Atkins (31, WA) 2:14:17
10. Richard Mahoney (29, MA) 2:14:36

Women's Top Results

1. Joan Benoit (21, ME) 2:35:15*+
2. Patti M. Lyons (28, MA) 2:38:22
3. Susan C. Krenn (29, CA) 2:38:50
4. Elizabeth A. Hassell (35, AUS) 2:39:48
5. Sue J. Petersen (34, CA) 2:43:02
6. Kim Merritt (23, WI) 2:44:28
7. Cynthia A. Dalrymple (37, WA) 2:45:30
8. Karen S. Doppes (23, OH) 2:45:45
9. Gayle Olinek (26, CAN) 2:47:30
10. Lauri McBride (26, NY) 2:47:37

84th Boston Marathon - Monday, April 21, 1980

Bill Rodgers made it three straight, but he had to contend with an arch-nemesis - soaring temperatures that reached into the high 70s. His time of 2:12:11 was more than a minute ahead of Italy’s Marco Marchei (2:13:20). The apparent women’s winner, Canadian Jacqueline Gareau, crossed the line in the record time of 2:34:28, only to find another woman on the victory podium. It was later revealed that Rosie Ruiz had entered the race just after Kenmore Square, and Gareau was rightfully awarded the title seven days later.

Men's Top Results

1. Bill Rodgers (32, MA) 2:12:11
2. Marco Marchei (25, ITA) 2:13:20
3. Ron Tabb (25, TX) 2:14:48
4. Michael Koussis (30, GRE) 2:16:03
5. Paul Friedman (30, NJ) 2:16:46
6. Benji Durden (28, GA) 2:17:46
7. Jamie White (22, CA) 2:17:58
8. Stephen Floto (27, CO) 2:18:19
9. Kevin Ryan (32, NZL) 2:18:49
10. Mike Pinocci (25, CA) .2:18:52

Women's Top Results

1. Jacqueline Gareau (27, CAN) 2:34:28*
2. Patti M. Lyons (29, MA) 2:35:08
3. Gillian Adams (24, GBR) 2:39:17
4. Laurie Binder (32, CA) 2:39:22
5. Kathleen Samet (31, NM) 2:41:50
6. Ellison Goodall (25, MA) 2:42:23
7. Toni Bernhard (33, TX) 2:44:40
8. Debbie Eide (24, OR) 2:45:36
9. Elaine Campo (29, CA) 2:46:44
10. Kiki Sweigart (28, CT). 2:46:47

 

*Course Record
+American Record
^Masters Course Record

 

B.A.A. Moment 3

1966 - Bobbi Gibb

Although not an official entrant, Roberta “Bobbi” Gibb became the first woman to run the Boston Marathon. Joining the starting field shortly after the gun had been fired, Gibb finished the race in 3:21:40 to place 126th overall. Gibb again claimed the “unofficial” title in 1967 and 1968.