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Ndereba on the record about world mark

By John Powers, Globe Staff, 4/17/2001

f Kenya's Catherine Ndereba does break the women's world marathon record (2 hours 20 minutes 43 seconds, by countrywoman Tegla Loroupe), she doubts it will happen in Boston.

''Probably not,'' said Ndereba, who won Boston for the second straight time yesterday and whose personal best is the 2:21:33 she ran in Chicago last year. ''Maybe on a faster course. This is not a very fast course. Maybe when it has a tailwind ...''

Ndereba, who ran 2:23:53 yesterday, at least can shoot for the Boston course record of 2:21:45, set by Germany's Uta Pippig in 1994.

She'll take it

Delighted with second place (and a $40,000 payoff) was Poland's Malgorzata Sobanska, whose runner-up effort matched that of countrywoman Renata Paradowska in 1998. ''I am a little surprised to be second here,'' said the 31-year-old Sobanska, who was in the lead until Wellesley Hills. ''When I come here and see who would run, I knew it would be tough to be in the top three.'' ... Lost in Ndereba's jetwash yesterday was a strong performance by the Russians, who finished third ( Lyubov Morgunova), sixth ( Irina Timofeyeva), and seventh ( Ludmila Petrova). It was the best showing in the women's division by one country since the Russians went 1-5-8 with Olga Markova, Albina Galliamova , and Tatiana Titova in 1993. ''We are getting closer and closer,'' said Morgunova, who was eighth in London last year, 23d at the Olympics, and won Honolulu in December. ''Maybe not next year, but give us a little bit of time.'' ... Neil Weygandt, 54, completed his 35th consecutive Boston Marathon, finishing in 3:32:52. Dave McGillivray, who is technical director of the Marathon, ran the course late in the day (after his other job was done) to keep his streak alive at 29. He finished in approximately four hours.


Regina Birch Walzer of Woodbury, Conn., who at first appeared to be the 38th-place woman overall in 2:55:44, was removed from the results last night because she did not appear at four checkpoints after the halfway point. Originally, the 49-year-old had been among the top 10 in her age group. ... Bobbi Gibb, running on the 35th anniversary of the historic run that made her the first woman to finish Boston, dropped out late in the race ... Keizo Yamada of Japan, who won here in 1953 in 2:18:51, ran 3:39:32 to win his age group. Yamada is 73 ... The official entry count yesterday was 15,606: 9,899 men, 5,660 women, and 47 wheelchairs. It was the third-highest field behind 1996's (the 100th anniversary) and last year's... The total prize money distributed was $525,000 ... Bob Gainey, general manager of the Dallas Stars, crossed the line in 3:39:01 ... Bob Chase, a 1965 Brown graduate from Falls Church, Va., ran his sixth Boston and his 17th overall marathon. Chase, who ran track at Brown for four seasons, is the father of Peter Chase, who writes for the Red Sox Web site as well as the Boston University News ... BU sports information director Ed Carpenter was in charge of the massive press room at the Copley Plaza.

Hall called it

First to congratulate Ernst VanDyk after his wheelchair win was Bob Hall, who won the first men's wheelchair event in 1975 as a 24-year-old. Hall, who builds racing chairs, said a week ago, ''Keep an eye on VanDyk. He's improving fast.'' ... The BAA's text-based running commentary on the race was an accurate and informative way to follow the day's events via computer. Also, the athlete tracking system worked well. We used it to follow Globe runners Elaine Ryan(3:55) and Marjorie Pritchard(4:31). The success of the system, a significant upgrade from last year, was the result of major efforts in manpower and equipment by race sponsors Nextel, USDataCenters, and Compaq.

Barbara Huebner, Bob Monahan, and Bill Griffith of the Globe Staff contributed to this report.

This story ran on page G07 of the Boston Globe on 4/17/2001.
© Copyright 2001 Globe Newspaper Company.

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