Boston: Bob near finish
1979 Races

Boston: GBTCers in pack
(Dick Mahoney, Randy Thomas, Hodge)

This would be the year that I would become acceptable in terms of chosen lifestyle (an obsession with athletics/shoe jockey) through my performance in the Boston Marathon (3rd place 2:12:30). Running well at Boston for a local person was really the only thing that would make an impression on your friends and neighbors, perhaps even more so than an Olympic Medal to some because of the magnitude of the "coverage" of the race and the way it has captured local folk’s imagination. The "Holy Grail" of marathon running.  See Article in Lowell Sun ; Article in Boston Globe

When the year began my immediate goals were the World Cross Trials in Atlanta in February where I finished a disappointed 16th,, while my teammates Dan Dillon & Randy Thomas went one and two. I also planned two 20k races, the National in Holliston Ma. on March 4 and a Nike Club Challenge race over 20k in Atlanta on April 1 both as primers for the ultimate goal BOSTON! I also had some indoor track races planned as speed workouts and I felt after the XC Trials that a lack of serious speed training and a fairly heavy load of mileage had hurt my chances of making that team. But it all worked out pretty well in the end.

In March I developed a knee problem. My knee became very stiff and achy after a mile or two of running and would get progressively worse as I continued. I had just run a very good 20k in 60:44 finishing second to Randy Thomas in the National. I decided that it would be risky to get on the track, particularly indoors and I began a routine of running the Boston Marathon Course hills from the Newton Fire Station to Boston College every week at pretty close to marathon race pace. I did this workout on five occasions once incorporating it into a 20 mile run. My knee was still bothersome but getting better. It all came together on Patriots Day.

79 was also the year my team, the GBTC won the National Cross Country Championships held in Raliegh N.C. I finished 3rd behind Salazar and Herb Lindsay. I also won the Bay to Breakers Road Race something I thought was insignificant at the time but cherish today looking back on how few majors I won, other than Jacksonville 15k in 1980 and Beppu in 82.

Also relevant to 1979: Weekend in Sydney . 

1979 Races

Jan. 13 - Dartmouth Relays 5k 14:18

Jan. 28 - NEAAU Champs. @ Harvard 5K 14:18

Feb. 10 - XC Trials Atlanta, Ga. 16th pl.

March 4 - National 20k Road-Holliston Ma.

R Thomas 59:47
B. Hodge 60:44
J. Flora 61:04
R. Sayre 61:45
B. Doyle 61:54
G. Arbogast 62:01

April 1 - Nike Club Challenge Atlanta, Ga.  20k  63:00 pl?

April 16 - Boston Marathon  3rd pl. 2:12:30  (see leader chart below)

May 20 - Bay to Breakers RR  7.6m 1st 36:50 (record)

May 30 - Boston College All Comers Track Meet   5k 1st 14:23

June 3 - Providence 10k RR 1st 29:44  2nd Bob Doyle  3d Dan Dillon

June 6 - NEAAU Track @ BC 10k 2nd 29:40  1st D. Mahoney 29:40.

June 10 - Litchfield RR 7.1m 1st 35:42

June 17 - Mt. Washington RR 7.6m 1st 62:08

July 13 - British AAA Champs. London, 10k track 8th 28:58

July 28 - Carver, Ma. 5m RR 1st 25:50

August 12 - City to Surf Sydney AUS. 14.6k 2nd 42:17 1st Bill Scott (AUS)

September 1 - Kingfield Me. 10k RR 1st 29:10

September 16 - Freedom Trail RR 8m 4th 37:51

September 29 - National 10k Purchase NY ? pl. time.

October 6 - Acton, Ma. 7m RR 1st 33:55

October 7 - Dennis, Ma. 6m RR 28:40 Tie for first with Bickford.

October 13 - Skylon Marathon Buffalo NY Marathon Training run over Olympic Trials course. 2:42

November 4th - NEAAU Boylston, Ma. 10k XC 3rd 30:01 1st Meyer, 2nd Dillon

November 10 - Canadian XC Champs. Halifax Nova Scotia 12k ? pl. 37:04 GBTC won team title.

November 24 - National XC Raliegh, NC. 3rd 30:52 GBTC team title.

Salazar 30:27
H. Lindsay 30:47
B. Hodge  30:52
D. Dillon 30:56
G. Meyer 31:01
D. McDonald 31:04
S. Scott 31:05
S. Plasencia 31:06
J. Stinzi 31:12
M. Ludwiskowski 31:18
D. Clary 31:22
R. Thomas 31:23

December 30 - Palo Alto Ca. Runners World 5m RR  ? pl. 24:10

BOSTON MARATHON CHECKPOINTS 1979:

Checkpoint

Record

1979 race

1st

2nd

3rd

4th

5th

6th

7th

8th

9th

10th

Framingham (6.75 miles)

31:26

31:54

Fleming

Ryan

Takami

Thomas

Shorter

Stewart

Rodgers

Seko

Bengtson

Drayton

Natick (10.5 miles)

49:46

50:08

Fleming

Ryan

Kardong

Mahoney

Rodgers

Stewart

Hodge

Seko

Takami

Babiracki

Wellesley (13.75 miles)

1:04:08

1:05:01

Fleming

Rodgers

Bjorklund

Mahoney

Seko

Kardong

Ryan

Hodge

Stewart

Thomas

Woodland (17.75 miles)

1:24:28

1:25:23

Bjorklund

Rodgers

Seko

Fleming

Hodge

Mahoney

Ryan

Stewart

Thomas

Atkins

Lake Street (21.5 miles)

1:46:03

1:46:20

Rodgers

Seko

Bjorklund

Fleming

Hodge

Mahoney

Ryan

Thomas

Stewart

Sandoval

Coolidge Corner (24.12 miles)

1:58:39

1:58:41

Rodgers

Seko

Bjorklund

Hodge

Fleming

Ryan

Mahoney

Thomas

Atkins

Greig

Finish (26.2 miles)

2:09:56

2:09:27

Rodgers

Seko

Hodge

Fleming

Bjorklund

Ryan

Doyle

Thomas

Atkins

Mahoney

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