Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

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 footrace from Hopkinton, Massachusetts, U.S., to the Back Bay section of Boston, a distance of 42,195 metres (26 miles 385 yards). The world's oldest annual foot race, it was held first in 1897 and annually thereafter on Patriot's Day (originally April 19; from 1969 the third Monday in April), which honours the 1775 ride of Paul Revere. It is sponsored by the Boston Athletic Association. Runners (some 20,000 in the early 21st century, as opposed to about 200 in 1960) come from all over the world to participate.

      The marathon's first winner was John J. McDermott, who completed the 24.5-mile (39.4-km) race in less than 3 hours. The race length was increased to its current distance in 1927. In 1966 Roberta Gibb became the first woman to complete the race, though she ran without an official number. In 1967 Kathy Switzer, who had given her name as K.V. Switzer on the race application, was issued an official number and completed the marathon, although the race director tried to have her removed from the course. In 1972 the Boston Marathon became the first marathon race officially to admit women runners. Three years later it became the first major marathon to hold a wheelchair race.

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Universalium. 2010.

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