Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Boston Marathon concedes its course is ineligible for world, American records

The organizers of the Boston Marathon decided today not to contest IAAF rules that make the course ineligible for a world record. (The Boston route ends 459 feet of elevation below the start, and it is a point-to-point course that is susceptible to a tailwind such as the one last Monday that helped Geoffrey Mutai finish in 2 hours, 3 minutes, 2 seconds _ 57 seconds faster than Haile Gebrselassie's world record.)

B.A.A. officials had said they would file the paperwork to have the record certified, even though the IAAF language is clear and Boston has long been known to be ineligible. Today the B.A.A. decided not to force a confrontation over the issue. Instead, it said it would "engage members of Boston's scientific and medical communities" to see if they can't come up with new rules that would better recognize the challenges of the course, notwithstanding its net downhill layout.