Saturday, February 1, 2014

1982 Commonwealth Games Marathon video

Here is a recently uploaded video of the second half of one of the greatest marathons ever run. This race was just a few months after the Salazar/ Beardsley Duel in the Sun. Start at about 57 minutes if you want to watch the duel and race to the finish.

From the Youtube video:

The race that stopped the Nation ... October 8, 1982 ... Robert De Castella was the favourite to win the marathon at the 1982 Commonwealth Games in Brisbane. At the start of the race, Tanzanians Gidamis Shahanga and Juma Ikangaa raced to the lead and were 50m ahead of the pack after five minutes. After the 20 km mark, this gap had widened to several hundred meters. By the 23 km mark, Ikangaa had taken the lead from his compatriot, with de Castella in the main pack some 250m behind, but closing. de Castella passed the now tiring Shahanga at the 38 km mark, and in the next kilometre drew level with Ikangaa then took the lead. However Ikangaa was not done yet, and re-took the lead slightly. The duel continued for the remainder of the race. Eventually de Castella pulled away, and won by 80m in a time of 2:09:18, 12 seconds ahead of Ikangaa. Briton Mike Gratton finished 3rd in 2hrs 12min, 6sec, and Shahanga faded to finish 6th. The race finished on the streets of Brisbane, not in the main stadium.
This video shows the race coverage from the 60 minute mark.
Deek's Golden Day recent article and video where Rob De Castella recalls his famous sprint down Brisbane's iconic riverside road.

From a letsrun thread on the race video:

 I still think the most interesting and captivating time of the marathon peaked in 1984 at LA and this was part of it.Yes the competition and depth is far behind modern times with all the 2:04 marathoners on the flat courses but you the 1984 LA Marathon was the last time the marathon in the Olympics was a major media focus. 
You had stars like Salazar, Deke,and Seko in a showdown and darkhorses like Lopes, Rod Dixon, Shahanga, Ikaanga. (However most experts favored Lopes right before the games after his 27:17 10,000 that June).
This race in hot conditions on a hilly course was the fastest marathon ever run (after Salazar's 1981 World Best was found to be run on a short course).
At the time Salazar was considered the top marathoner then Deke and Igaanga have this race. A year later they all had a big showdown in Rotterdam which Deke won and outkicked Lopes and Salazar finished in 5th place. Add Seko to the mix and Rod Dixon and you have the most entertaining and exciting era of marathoning. And then Steve Jones breaks out a year later.
The marathoners of today are so much better its no comparison. But it was a more interesting time when you had top contenders from about 9 different nations, all established names with major wins racing for the Olympic tital.
By 1992 the Olympic Marathon started being relegated to not the major focus for top marathoners.
Imagine this race with two of the top marathons ever run at the time was in the freaking Commonwealth Games. Deke and Ikaanga destroyed themselves for a race that paid zero money. And their efforts along with Salazar, Rodgers, and Shorter started the competition amongst the major city marathons that brought the money out for the next generation. Without them there wouldn't have been the financial incentive that created the depth of talent today.

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