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She aims to right a wrong

By Susan Bickelhaupt, Globe Staff, 4/14/2000

n the women's side of the masters division, the favorite is someone who won the race before. But neither she nor the race organizers knew it.

Tatyana Pozdnyakova, 45, ran Boston in 1995 and had the fastest time in the masters race, but didn't win the division.

That's because she was listed as 39 years old, not 40, a snafu she blames on wrong information on her passport. Pozdnyakova was 17th overall with a time of 2:40.26; Irina Bondarchouk, 42, recorded the best women's masters time (2:43:42) for 18th place.

''It was a mistake on my passport when I ran with the Army Club in the Soviet Union, and I didn't change it when I went to the US,'' she said.

Pozdnyakova has won the masters division in 10 of 11 marathons, and is on an eight-marathon win streak. She ran a career-best 2:29:25 in the 1998 Chicago Marathon, the second best masters marathon time ever as she won the division and finished fifth overall.

Pozdnyakova, who has qualified to represent the Ukraine in the Sydney Olympics, is training in Gainesville, Fla., where she lives with her husband and son. She'll return to the Ukraine in June to train with the team.

Her top challengers will be Josette Columb-Janin of France and Cindy Barber-Keeler of Florida, who have won the division for the past three years.


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