Typically when one thinks about racing in Boston, they would think of the Boston Maration, the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix at the Reggie Lewis Center, or some kind of collegiate cross-country racing in Franklin Park. There was one time where a world championships was held in Boston for both a professional and developing levels of running.
This past Wednesday, March 21st, marked the 20th anniversary of the IAAF World Cross Country Championships held in Boston’s Franklin Park. This was the second and most recent time the World Cross Country Championships has taken place in the Western Hemisphere (first time was in East Rutherford, NJ in 1984). Many of the event winners determined that day include recent running legends (Haile Gebrselassie (Ethiopia) and Paula Radcliffe (Great Britian)) and Olympic or World Champion medalists (John Ngugi (Kenya), Ismael Kirui (Kenya), and Wang Junxia (China)).
The New England Runner magazine featured an article about this event in their March/April 2012 issue, discussing the behind-the-scenes of setting up the event and many American racer’s recollection of the snow-covered race course. Some of these quote recollections included Dartmouth alum Ted FitzPatrick (who now works for Reebock), Dartmouth coach Mark Coogan (finished 36th overall in the men’s long race), and Princeton alum Lynn Jennings (who won the women’s long race and helped the women’s team place 2nd overall). If you have some time this weekend for a good read, we recommend this one.