when rodgers beat virgin


Such a nice day, bright sun, near 70, very spring, brought me through 14 miles in the park, interestingly both tired and energetic, the legs feeling the mileage of the past few days but the weather carrying me through the 14 lightly.  Often when I’m tired in a longer run, I’ll try to recall the running form of good runners, and today I pictured Craig Virgin, not the ‘rock star’ that Pre was but still an American distance phenom of the late 70’s and early 80’s, a multiple NCAA distance champion and record holder, and I think the only American male to ever win the World Cross Country Championship.  He was such a smooth and a strong runner that I love trying to emulate his form.  I remember the big deal when he was moving up to the marathon and was debuting in the Boston Marathon, forget which one (‘79, ‘80, or ‘81?) but during Bill Rodgers’ prime, and Rodgers ended up winning ahead of Virgin, I think by over a minute, showing just what a road warrior Rodgers was, a former smoker and a half-way decent collegiate runner at Wesleyan, beating arguably the best pure American distance runner ever, and that some runners are just built to compete on the roads.


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