Athletics News

Three reasons why Boston would be brilliant

1) The Marathon will be Magnificent

Think about it: it’s 20 miles into the 2024 Olympic marathon, right when the real race gets going, and the most famous hill in distance running, you know, the one that breaks hearts, is the one that sorts the men from the boys, the champions from the chumps. The Boston Marathon is perhaps the most fabled of marathons, a reputation that, through both horror and heroism, has only been enhanced in recent years. The course, which will no doubt also be utilised for the Olympic Marathon itself if Boston wins, is one of the most undulating, challenging courses around, and its difficulty will make for a suitably gruelling and epic race in, oh, nine and a half years’ time. And as ESPN’s Chris Chavez boldly predicted yesterday: “49-year-old Meb Keflezighi captures his second victory on Boston soil”.  He was joking, yes, but the way Keflezighi’s going, who knows? Okay, let’s be honest: a waif-thin Kenyan who is now still in his teens will most likely win, but still, what a place it’ll be for an epic race to unfold.

2) It won’t cost the Earth

One of the biggest complaints about several major sporting events in recent times was the exorbitant cost of hosting them. Think the Winter Olympics in Sochi 2014 and Putin going on a spending spree with his oil money and blank chequebook. Think the World Cup in Brazil, and riots in the streets from a nation of people who had their pockets picked in order to host the party of parties for world soccer. The great thing about the Boston bid is that many of the venues are already in existence, as is much of the public transport infrastructure. Boston will also have a plethora of relatively empty University campuses to use for accommodation purposes, not to mention hosting events themselves. It will be a smaller, cuter Olympics, than many of those in recent memory, and one that won’t leave Bostonians with stacks of waste-of-money ghost venues and a residual anger about having to pick up the tab for decades to come.

3) They love their sport

Boston is a city that contributes a huge amount to the national and international sporting community, and that should be rewarded, sooner rather than later. It is the site of the world’s oldest annual marathon, the one that has managed to stay at the very top tier of the sport throughout that time, the one that brings the masses and the world’s best athletes to its streets every year in one of the world’s great running celebrations. It successfully hosted the World Cross Country in 1992, an event that first introduced us to stars of the future like Paula Radcliffe and Haile Gebrselassie. In American terms, it is the home of Tom Brady and the New England Patriots, the Celtics, the Red Sox, the Bruins, and more. They love their sport in Boston, and they’ll love the Olympics, too.

Don’t believe me? Here, check out the promo video that helped them beat the other US contenders of LA, San Francisco and Washington DC.


Chris Harrington, second from left, with some of the other Western runners
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Cathal Dennehy

Cathal Dennehy

Cathal Dennehy is a freelance journalist, a once-serious, now-retired athlete who writes for a number of international publications in the running industry. He has won two sports-writing awards, the Peter Ball Memorial Award in Ireland and the Wills Writing Award in the UK. Nationally, he previously worked for the Sunday Tribune, Irish Runner magazine and has written for the Sunday Independent, Irish Independent, the Guardian and The Independent in Britain. He is a regular contributor to Running Times, Runner's World, RunBlogRun and the IAAF website.
His banter levels are often poor, occasionally exceptional.

1 Comment

  1. brendan grehan
    January 10, 2015 at 8:38 am — Reply

    All runners. Running is Just One part of athletics. I enjoy jtg.

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