1880—Frank “Black Dan”  Hart won the  O’Leary Belt walking competition before a full house at Madison Square Garden, covering a record 565 miles in 142 hours. Hart was considered the premier “pedestrian” at a time when six-day walking races were all the craze.



NPR Storyhttp://www.npr.org/2014/04/03/297327865/in-the-1870s-and-80s-being-a-pedestrian-was-anything-but

(Scroll Down) https://onceuponatimeinthevest.blogspot.com/2018/07/v-8-n-48-all-kinds-of-stuff.html


1896–Greek Spiridon “Spyros” Louis, wearing shoes that had been donated by his fellow villagers, gave his country a thrill by winning the inaugural Olympic Marathon in Athens. According to the British paper The Guardian, Louis “…passed the leader, Edwin Flack, a London-based Australian accountant who had earlier won the 800 and 1500 metres.”

            “Flack entered the marathon despite never having run further than 10 miles before. He eventually became delirious with dehydration and his companion asked a Greek spectator to help keep him on his feet.”

            “But Flack was so confused he attacked the spectator and pushed him to the ground before being bundled into a carriage and taken away for treatment by Prince Nicholas of Greece.”  http://sport.guardian.co.uk/olympics2004/athletics/story/0,14782,1293622,00.html


            American Ellery Clark, a future Hall-of-Famer, won the High Jump (5-11 ½ [1.81]) and Long Jump (20-10 [6.35]) in Athens and M.I.T. grad Thomas Curtis won the 110-meter hurdles.

            Another American, Tom Burke, who had earlier won the 400, won a 2nd gold medal in the 100-Meters. As you can see in the photo below, Burke (2nd from the left), was the only man in the final using the now-common crouch start. And the runners were separated by ropes!  (photo in the attached file if it doesn’t appear in this email)

                        Marathon Reporthttps://www.olympedia.org/results/56017

                        History of the Marathon:



                        ClarkHOF Biohttps://www.usatf.org/athlete-bios/ellery-clark

1963—John Pennel jumped 16-4 (4.98) in Natchitoches, Louisiana, to break his own American Record in the Pole Vault  (16-3/4.955). For unknown reasons, neither mark was ratified by the IAAF as a World Record.

1982–Eager to put on a good show for the loyal Eugene fans, race director Alberto Salazar assembled a field for a special 10,000-meters in Eugene that included himself, World Record holder Henry Rono (27:22.4), 3-time NCAA 10k Champion Suleiman Nyambui (he would win his 4th in June), and Great Britain’s Adrian Royle, who had beaten Salazar to win the U.S.  X-Country title the previous fall. The Oregon alum told the Eugene Register Guard, “I haven’t run well here in three years…I’ve been injured and things just haven’t worked out. I owe people here a good performance”.

            Well, the fans that stayed to watch the race after the Oregon-LSU dual meet was over, despite having to endure a heavy rain the whole time, were rewarded with one of the great distance races in history.

After Rono led through the first mile in 4:27, Salazar took over and went through a steady stream of laps in the 66-67 seconds range. Only Rono and Royle were able to stay with him, and by 4 miles it was just Salazar and Rono at the front. With just over a lap to go, Rono jumped into the lead, but Salazar stayed right with him. Coming off the final turn, Salazar sent the crowd of more than 5,000 fans into a frenzy as he drew even with Rono and the two greats went stride-for-stride down the final straight before Rono held on for a narrow win. Rono’s time of 27:29.90 was the 4th-fastest in history at the time, and Salazar’s 27:30.00 was #5 and just missed Craig Virgin’s American Record of 27:29.16. From: T&F News)

Much has been written about Rono’s past problems with alcohol, and he reportedly had one drink too many the night before this race, making his performance all the more impressive!

Kenny Moore’s great coverage in Sports Illustrated:


T&F News Cover(May)https://trackandfieldnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/1982_05.jpg