First woman to run Boston Marathon completes race again 50 years later

Course officials tried to pull her off the path, but she was not to be denied.

A runner who saw off furious race officials to become the first woman to complete the Boston Marathon has repeated the feat 50 years later.

Yesterday morning, wearing the very same number which was nearly ripped off her five decades earlier, the now 70-year-old Switzer completed the Boston Marathon for a ninth time.

But it is the first event in 1967 - which she entered using only her initials - which sticks in people's memories, helped by the pictures capturing the moment the official, Jock Semple, tried to remove the number and force Ms Switzer from the course.

The 38-year-old mother of two broke away from Kenyan-born Rose Chelimo of Bahrain with five kilometres to go to win the race on her debut in 2 hours 21 minutes and 53 seconds.

This time, she was far from the only woman.


The retired Marine ran a marathon in Washington, DC in 2015, as well as last year's Boston Marathon.

But on Monday when she ran the stretch of road where the incident happened, it turned out to be about a mile from the starting line. It makes you feel there's no way you're not going to finish the race.

"I don't know what they're inspired about", he said as he broadcast his trek on Facebook Live. New records were set for both wheelchair races, with Swiss racer Marcel Hug taking home the win for the men at 1:18:04, and Manuela Schar, also of Switzerland, winning for the women with a time of 1:28:17.

Women were finally officially allowed to enter the Boston Marathon in 1972. She did not want to just walk again, she wanted to run marathons again. She is the founder of 261 Fearless, a running club for women.

Switzer and her coach pored through the rules and regulations about the Boston Marathon and couldn't find anything about gender. She said it has always been her dream to return to the streets of Boston after making history there in 1967.

  • Kyle Peterson