Walt Murphy is one of the finest track geeks that I know. Walt does #ThisDayinTrack&FieldHistory, an excellent daily service that provides true geek stories about our sport. You can check out the service for FREE with a free one-month trial subscription! (email: WaltMurphy44@gmail.com ) for the entire daily service. We will post a few historic moments each day, beginning February 1, 2024.

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By Walt Murphy’s News and Results Service (wmurphy25@aol.com), used with permission.

Walt Murphy’s News and Results Service  (wmurphy25@aol.com)

This Day in Track & Field–April  18

1959—San Jose State’s Ray Norton ran 10.1 for 100 meters on his “home” track to equal the World Record shared by fellow Americans Willie Williams, Ira Murchison, and Leamon King.

1983–Joan Benoit won her second Boston Marathon in the World Record time of 2:22:43, breaking Grete Waitz’s day-old mark of 2:25:28.7. Benoit went on to win the inaugural Women’s  Olympic Marathon the following summer.  Greg Meyer, a resident of Massachusetts at the time, won the Men’s race and was the last American man to do so until Meb Keflezighi won in 2014.

At the 2019 race, Benoit, hoping to run within 40-minutes of her 1979 winning time of 2:35:15, did much better, running 3:04:00 while wearing a Bowdoin singlet, just like she did 40 years prior while she was a student at the Maine school. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHPgKLBwVd4




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Meyer Interview (2022)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SdRyWeZ0pis

1987—Joe Dial jumped 19-4  ¾ (5.91) at the Kansas Relays to set the 6th of his 8 American Records in the Pole Vault. Dial had to wait 45 minutes before officials finally confirmed the record. He then missed 3 attempts at breaking Sergey Bubka’s World Record of 19-8  ½ (6.01).

Two Kansas legends, years removed from their glory days, were also on hand. Jim Ryun, less than two weeks shy of his 40thbirthday, finished 2nd in the Masters 800 (2:01.7) in his first competition since 1973, while 50-year old Al Oerter had to withdraw from the Discus because of back spasms.

1987—UCLA alum John Brenner returned to his home field and threw the shot 73-1/2 (22.26) to break Brian Oldfield’s   3-year old American Record of 72-9  ¼ (22.19). He would win his 2nd U.S. title in June and went on to win the bronze medal at the 1987 World Championships in Rome. He was the 1984 NCAA Champion in the Shot Put and Discus.

1988—Ibrahim Hussein became the first man from Kenya  (and Africa) to win the Boston Marathon, edging Tanzania’s Juma Ikangaa for the title (2:08:43-2:08.44). Finishing 3rd was John Treacy, who set the current Irish Record of 2:09:15, and 28th in 2:28:17 was 4-time Boston winner Bill Rodgers (1975, 1978-1980).

            Portugal’s Rosa Mota became the first woman in the “official” era to defend her title, winning with a time of 2:24:30.

Top 20https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1988_Boston_Marathon