Peruse the results of the top ten men from the Falmouths of the 80's to today.
Times have remained consistent. Americans have disappeared.
Certainly the Kenyan athletes who run the roads of Falmouth today are not so superior to the Americans of yester-year.
James Koskei Kenya 32:10 1
John Korir Kenya 32:13 2
Khalid Khannouchi :32:14 3
William Kiptum Kenya :32:16 4
Hendrick Ramaala South Africa 32:27 5
Christopher Cheboiboch Kenya :32:28 6
Benjamin Kimutai Kosgei Kenya 32:31 7
John Itati Kenya :32:36 8
Gilbert Koech Kenya :32:39 9
Ronald Mogaka Kenya 32:41 10
1. Mark Curp Lees Summit, MO 32:22
2. Steve Spence Penn. 32:27
3. Keith Brantly Florida 32:44
4. Geraldo Alcala Mexico 32:44
5. Steve Jones Wales 32:48
6. Kevin Foster England 33:06
7. Bill Reifsnyder Penn. 33:10
8. Paul Gompers Illinois 33:11
9. Don Norman Penn. 33:12
10. Pete Pfitzinger Wellesley, MA 33:20
1. Rolando Vera Ecuador 32:29
2. Keith Brantly Gainesville, FL 32:47
3. Salvador Garcia Mexico 32:54
4. Joaquim Silva Portugal 33:02
5. Gianni DeMadonna Italy 33:04
6. Ibrahim Hussein Kenya 33:05
7. Jean-Pierre Ndayisenga Belguim 33:07
8. Carlos Reitz Mexico 33:09
9. Mark Roberts Arizona 33:18
10. Rex Wilson Wellesley, MA 33:22
1. Arturo Barrios Mexico 32:17
2. Barry Smith England 32:31
3. Mike Musyoki Kenya 32:33
4. Ed Eyestone Utah 32:34
5. Peter Tootell England 32:38
6. John Doherty England 32:42
7. Joseph Kipsang Kenya 32:48
8. Bruce Bickford Wellesley, MA 32:50
9. Mark Scrutton England 32:52
10. Mark Curp Missouri 32:56
1. David Murphy England 32:02
2. Steve Jones Wales 32:06
3. Rob de Castella Austraila 32:09
4. Mike Musyoki Kenya 32:19
5. Barry Smith England 32:33
6. Simeon Kigen Kenya 32:34
7. Mark Curp Missouri 32:37
8. Adrian Leek Wales 32:43
9. Don Norman Penn. 32:46
10. Greg Meyer Holliston, MA 32:48
1. David Murphy England 32:17
2. Mark Curp Missouri 32:19
3. Adrian Leek Wales 32:26
4. Mike McLeod England 32:34
5. Jim Hill Oregon 32:55
6. Sosthenes Bitok Kenya 32:38
7. John Glidewell Missouri 32:44
8. Terry Baker Maryland 32:47
9. Charles Bevier NY 32:49
10. Jonathan Richards England 33:07
1. Joseph Nzau Kenya 32:20
2. Simon Kigen Kenya 32:27
3. Marc Curp Missouri 32:29
4. Paul Cummings Utah 32:42
5. John Gregorek NY 32:48
6. Bruce Bickford Maine 32:51
7. Gabriel Kamau Kenya 32:54
8. Matt Centrowitz Brooklyn 32:56
9. Geoff Smith England 33:10
10. Bob Hodge Lowell 33:12
1. Alberto Salazar Oregon 31:53 CR
2. Craig Virgin Illinois 32:12
3. Rod Dixon New Zealand 32:16
4. Mike Musyoki Kenya 32:17
5. Marc Curp Missouri 32:46
6. Dan Schlesinger No. Carolina 32:53
7. Sosthenes Bitok Kenya 33:06
8. George Malley Newton, MA 33:10
9. Bob Hodge GBTC 33:12
10. Gary Fanelli Penn. 33:13
1. Alberto Salazar Oregon 31:55 CR
2. Rod Dixon New Zealand 31:15
3. Mike McLeod England 32:32
4. Kirk Pfeffer Colorado 32:42
5. Craig Virgin Illinois 32:50
6. Herb Lindsey Colorado 33:00
7. Terry Baker Maryland 33:01
8. Robbie Perkins No. Carolina 33:03
9. Charlie Spedding Newton, MA 33:07
10. Ric Rojas Colorado 33:13
1. Rod Dixon New Zealand 32:20
2. Herb Lindsey Boulder, CO 32:32
3. Ric Rojas Boulder, CO 32:34
4. Bob Hodge GBTC 32:38
5. Greg Meyer GBTC 32:49
6. Terry Baker Wash. DC 32:58
7. Randy Thomas GBTC 33:03
8. Kyle Heffner Boulder, CO 33:07
9. Benji Durden Georgia 33:09
10. Stan Vernon Oklahoma 33:19
1. Craig Virgin West Lebanon, IL 32:19
2. Herb Lindsay Michigan 32:27
3. Bill Rodgers GBTC 32:29
4. Jon Sinclair Colorado 32:36
5. Frank Shorter Colorado 32:42
6. Rick Rojas Colorado 32:44
7. John Flora Northeastern TC 32:45
8. Mike Roche New Jersey 32:51
9. Robbie Perkins unat. 33:03
10. Benji Durden Georgia 33:21
1. Bill Rodgers GBTC 32:31 CR
2. Mike Roche New Jersey 32:37
3. Craig Virgin Athletics West 32:53
4. Mike Slack Minn, MN 33:02
5. Greg Fredericks State College, PA 33:04
6. Hillary Tuwei U. Richmond (KEN) 33:07
7. Bruce Bickford Northestern TC 33:10
8. Bob Hodge GBTC 33:12
9. Greg Meyer GBTC 33:18
10. Alberto Salazar GBTC 33:20
Peruse the results of the top ten men from the Falmouths of the 80's to today.
Its sad to see so few Americans focus on this great race but with the prize money options with the Americans only races, everyone's going to pick and choose according to how much of their travel budget they want to use and how much competition for $$. Kenyans fill up the fields to the extent that wasn't around in the 70's and 80's. Its a bad trend that's been going on obviously for 15 years but the fact is there aren't 50 to 80 28:45 Americans that are roaming around the country on the roads.
I would like to dig up old results from a race called Continental Holmes 10k from around 1983 to 1985. As I recall the number of sub 30 Americans in that field was tremendous.
Not true. While the times have remained the same, the reason for the lack of "whites" or "non-kenyans" is the fact that because of physiological differences, these "non-kenyans" have to focus completely on this race in order to win it, while for the kenyans it can be just another race in their schedule. "non-kenyans" have now decided to focus their efforts on bigger races that ensure a financial windfall, more appropriate to a one-shot, everything on the line effort. "non kenyans" can run the road circut, but will rarely produce such times unless they find one race, and focus completely on it, like a marathon.
Good point but I still say the depth of Americans is not as strong. Although the top end is creeping back. Look at the old results and see what Marc Curp did at Falmouth and he was obviously an all time road stud but was just a 28:01 10k. He basically ran just as fast as those Kenyans many times but look at their times and you have a 13:04, a 27:17, a 27:29, I would imagine that their race effort level and focus for this race for them isn't the same as Curps was.
Even if we did have the same depth as the 80's the results would be similar but those Kenyan's would probably be ruuning faster times there.
Mark Curp and others of that era never saw "Kenyans", just a competitor he'd try to break mid race or be broken himself. Never was running for the "1st American" finisher $$$.
Right on Charlie.
AGREED completely..todays US runners are afraid of non-whites.
that was NEVER the case with the likes of Lindsay, Al Sal, Virgin, Shorter, Rodgers, Curp, Nenow, etc...
look at how many Americans are in the list Hodgie posted above! thats not just one or two guys busting thru that is a lot of studs.
Americans are running slower now than they did 20 years ago and that is a disgrace
But, how much of the comparison is based on who the race organizers try and recruit now compared to 20 years ago? i.e., is the relative effort to get Africans or Europeans into a race these days a lot more than it used to be?
Not to disagree completely with the original conclusion, but a single statistic rarely reflects only one trend.
To break 33:00 at Falmouth, you need to be around 29:00 for the 10k.
Salazar was 28:12 for the 10k in 1982 & ran 31:51.
Um, I disagree the GBTC men of Hodgie-San's day (Salazar, Meyer, Rodgers etc.) were running Falmouth as their one race they were going to focus on for the season. From what I've seen, they raced quite a bit for most of the year, including multiple marathons.
Bob nice comparison. I ran falmouth only once. 1982. i assume that yesterday was hot but in 1982 it was hot and very humid so those '82 times really impress me. i ran the first 4 miles incredibly hard for me (i was 19 - college runner) and just died over the last 3 miles. I finished in a shuffle. i still remember judy st. hilaire going by me around mile six and having absolutely nothing in my legs.
On a personal note from that race for anyone who enjoys stories of debauchery.
back in those days, i had some connections (friend of friend thing) with the elite & race organizers so after finishing I got ushered into the private tent where beer was flowing freely - didn't bother to drink any water or anything - got very drunk and needed to pee so crossed the street onto the heights beach - weaving/stumbing/ and into the water. got out waist deep water and turned around to my friends who were sheparding me around and as i began to pee my face went from contorted to contentment. my friends still laugh at the way people who were within 10-15 yards of me who had watched me stumble into the water fled the area around me when they realized i was peeing. it was like someone had screamed "shark"!
i woke up with a big headache and bad sunburn the next day.
Those are interesting #'s, and the US runners? times from those days re quite impressive. There is no doubt that except for a few exceptions, US runners have gotten slower and the rest of the world faster. But, some years are slower than others based on weather (heat, wind) and tactics. So..it is not an entirely fair comparison picking just the 2002 race as a standard. What about 2000?
1 Yatich Mark Kenya 24 M 0:31:43
2 Kimani Joseph Kenya 27 M 0:31:46
3 Khannouchi Khalid Ossining NY USA 29 M 0:31:47
4 Kiptum William Kenya 29 M 0:31:54
5 Korir John Kenya 24 M 0:32:00
6 Munji Titus Kenya 20 M 0:32:04
7 Kamathi Charles Kenya 22 M 0:32:09
8 Githuka Peter Kenya 31 M 0:32:10
9 Nyakeraka Lazarus Kenya 24 M 0:32:19
10 Otwori Hezron Kenya 23 M 0:32:22
11 Mogaka Ronald Kenya 23 M 0:32:23
What about 1996:
1. Joseph Kimani 36 Kenya 31:36
2. Peter Githuka 30 Kenya 31:41
3. Joseph Kamau Kenya 23 Kenya 31:55
4. Hezron Otwori 19 Kenya 31:58
5. Lazarus Nyakeraka 20 Kenya 32:12
6. Gideon Mutisya 29 Kenya 32:14
7. Phillimon Hanneck 25 Zimbabwe 32:21
8. Alphonce Muindi 24 Kenya 32:22
9. Thomas Osanao 26 Kenya 32:25
10. Daniel Kihara 30 Kenya 32:33
I am not even sure if those were the best years (time-wise). But in those years (?96 &2000), our stars of yester-year( Curp, Eyestone, Meyer, Rodgers, Lindsay, Shorter, Hodge, etc) would have been hard-pressed to break the top 10. MOST would have nto gotten in there. Curp could have sneaked in. Albetero?? Well his times ARE mind-boggling. He was on a different level. He and Virgin at their best could have competed for the top spots for sure. THEY were really different. But I would not say, as Hodgie-san says, that over-all ?times have remained consistent. ? They have gotten faster (depth-wise and excluding some slower years). Bob Hodge?s best time was 32:38 (?). That got him 4th. That?s not a top 10 performance in the fast years in this era (which is of course to be expected). But I obviously agree with his main point: the US runners of yester-years were not TOO far off the best Kenyans of today, not as much was one might think. AND the US runners of today are not ANYwhere near the Kenyans of today.
Lastly, if you agree with Hodgie-san?s point(s), than you can not agree with Frank Shorter: because if times have NOT changed that much since the early 80?s,and the Kenyans are not ALWAYS running mind-boggling times (MUCH faster than the ?pre-EPO? years), than?.Shorter?s beliefs of ?EVERYONE (except, me, Frank Shorter, and some of my US running buddies) is/was on drugs!? must not be true.
Salazar ran 27:25 in Paris, 2 weeks before Falmouth 82. It seems to me that if you average out the times over the years
it is very clear that they have not improved a great deal.
The American runners of 20 YEARS AGO would still be competing for spots in the top ten, and not just Rodger,Salazar, Virgin, Bickford, Meyer, Cummings etc. but also Curp, Glidewell, Baker, Fredricks, Brantly, Norman, Malley & others.
32:30's still does it most years & all those guys above were right there.
1. Too many runners out of college...or high school for that matter...simply give up on competitive running. You don't have as many Ron Daws or Bill Rodgers type athletes who were ok but nothing special in college go on to keep it up and turn out good performances. We could have 100+ sub 2:20 guys if people just don't throw in the towel too early.
2. No one runs the roads anymore. This whole running roads will kill track speed thing is killing us. AlSal and Shorter didn't seem to think so.
3. Too much whining, too little training. Too many runners are still stuck on the whole "less is more" credo.
4. Too much limit setting. Too much emphasize on being first non-African instead of being just first.
5. Scared to race. It seems like runners in the 70s and 80s raced a lot more than runners do today. An over-emphasize on periodization. Training for that "one race", but when that "one race" comes around you still underperform. You can't be competitive running around the track by yourself doing a workout.
again classifying myself as a high school runner during the heyday of boston running, Alan's comments regarding "one race" preparation rings true. As a kid, you'd show up at races in the greater boston area on any given weekend and you could be standing next to an olympic team contender - races like the cohasset 10k, scituate 10k, brandsmart 10k (that was a good race - i remember bruce bickford winning that one year i ran on a day where it had to be in the high 80's low 90's without a cloud in the sky). heck just showing up at fresh pond you might race against a "name". the gbtc guys all ran against each other all the time. you could join them on runs too. hodgie has his workouts/races posted on his web site - check out the amount of racing he did.
he never saw kenyans because they werent entered in the race. americans arent running as fast on the roads, and why should they? If curp had a bad day he was still a top 10, if he had a bad day now, he would be out of the money.
American women will get the reality check in ten years when the roads roaces they can win now are dominated by african woman.
It not hard to agree with Hodgie-san. He is one of the top runners in 4 of the years mentioned. He is a lot more likely to understand how those races were run and what the skill level of the participants were than someone who wasn't there or in many cases even born. Malmo could also offer good insite as he is also listed.
I find Hodgie-san's opinion very compelling in that he isn't guessing how it was done. He has a lot of first hand experience with elite races and participants.
Kenyans were racing Falmouth in the 80's though not as many as today.
Up until 1986 there was NO PRIZE MONEY at Falmouth. Athletes came to run against the best in this dramatic road race setting.
The race gained popularity when Bill raced Frank in 1975. Tommy Leonard was the dreamweaver & Joe Concannon of the Globe shared the vision and helped to profile the race as a major running event.
The athletes WANTED TO run Falmouth, regardless of finances.
Jeri from Houston wrote:
It not hard to agree with Hodgie-san. He is a lot more likely to understand how those races were run and what the skill level of the participants were than someone who wasn't there.
One need not have been present at the races mentioned to interpret certain aspects of their depth and caliber. For example, a race won in 31:45 with a tenth-place time of 32:00 had a better field overall than a race won in 33:00. I've never been to Falmouth but I guarantee you I'm right.
Nice bootlicking, though.
"Kenyans were racing Falmouth in the 80's though not as many as today"
i cant think of a bigger understatement.