In the 1980’s the first Kenyan runners began entering (and winning) marathons in the
In the 1990’s the Kenyans and their fellow East Africans seemed to win everywhere. Kenyan runners won
During this time period many in the
But if we examine the winning times of the
In addition, both of these races have been dominated by numerous nationalities since their inceptions. While American runners won the first 13 NYC Marathons, nine different countries have won it since 1983. These include
So the fact that an American runner has not won
Recently there have been some promising performances by Americans such as Meb Keflezhigi (silver medal in Ahtens) and Ryan Hall (2:08:24 in
Until the late 1990's the Americans absolutely dominated Olympic basketball. The USA regularly sent university athletes to the Olympics. By 1988, however, the rest of the world began to learn how to compete with, and beat these college kids---in Seoul the USA placed third behind the Soviets and the Yugoslavs. In Barcelona in 1992, the Americans sent their best pros to restore dominance, and the Dream Team I (1992) and Dream Team II) did just that, taking home gold in 1992 and 1996 and again in 2000. But this second honeymoon was relatively short lived, and by Athens 2004 the USA again had to settle for bronze. The rest of the world was watching all those years, and learning how to beat the USA. Now there is parity among international teams so that no single country dominated the others. . . yet.
So our prediction is that in time the Africans will meet their match on the road. Sporting performance is a dynamic phenomena, and is the result of a myriad of factors, only one of which is physiological and athletic ability. History, after all, has proven that we are all human.
Come back soon for the women’s and other marathon analyses!