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DISTANCE RUNNING HALL OF FAME ANNOUNCES NOMINEES FOR INDUCTION

March 10, 2006 (Utica, New York) -- The National Distance Running Hall of Fame’s Advisory Board announced today list of the eight nominees for induction as members of the Hall’s Class of 2006.  Three of the eight nominees will be inducted during the internationally acclaimed Hall of Fame Weekend in Utica, New York, July 8-9. 

The eight nominees for induction into the Hall of Fame are:

Gerry Lindgren, the original teenage distance running phenomenon, obliterated almost every high school distance running mark on the books and eventually set the world record for the six-mile distance.  In 1964, his 10,000-meter victory over two seasoned veterans in the U.S. /U.S.S.R. meet was a signal of what Americans could achieve in longer races.  Some of his records still stand nearly four decades after they were set;

Miki Gorman, two-time winner of both the Boston and New York City Marathons.  Three of those wins came after the age of 40, a feat made even more remarkable because she only came into the sport of distance running in her 30s;

Patti (Catalano) Dillon, first American women to Break 2:30 for the marathon and the second to do so in the world. Dillon set the American marathon record three times (1980 Montreal 2:30, New York City 2:29 and 1981 Boston 2:57:51. Along with Joan Benoit Samelson, Dillon ignited the American running boom of the 1970’s and 1980’s;

Mary Liquori, was ranked number one in the world three times. In 1967, as a high school runner Liquori ran a 3:59.8 in the mile. He won the NCAA mile in 1969, 1970 and 1971 and won nine straight Penn Relay titles. Liquori won 14 national titles and three straight Wanamaker Miles;

Amby Burfoot, finished 15 Boston Marathons including a win in 16968 with a time of 2:22:17. He was the first American to win the Boston marathon since 1957. Burfoot is the Executive Editor of Runner’s World Magazine. He has written several books on running including Runner’s World Complete Book of Running;

Pricilla Welch, holds several masters’ women’s records at a variety of distances including the women’s masters marathon with a time of 2:26:51. Some of Welch’s awards include Runner’s World Magazine 1986 masters Woman Runner of the year, 1991Masters Runner of the Quarter Century and was voted Best Female Masters Road Runner in the 1996 in their “100 Years of Running” issue;

Jon Sinclair, dominated US road racing in the 1980’s. He scored victories in some of the country’s best know road races: Bloomsday 12K (1983, 1986, Peachtree 10K (1982), Boilermaker Road Race (1989), Tulsa Run 15K, (1988), Cherry Blossom (1987) and the Virginia 10 Miler (1982, 1988, 1991 and 1993 to name a few. He played a roll in the formation of the Association of Road Racing Athletes. This Association tried to legitimize the direct payment of prize money to athletes based on their performance. Runners World has called Jon Sinclair the KING OF THE RANKINGS;

Tom Fleming, a two time champion of the New York City Marathon (1975 & 1979). He was a two time runner up in the Boston marathon (1973 & 1974). Fleming won the Los Angeles marathon in 1981, Cleveland and Toronto International Marathons in 1978. He held the American Records in the 15 miles, 20 miles, 25K, 30K, and 50K.

According to Distance Running Hall of Fame Executive Director John R. Petrone II, the eight finalists were chosen after a nine-month nomination and selection process of accepting names and credentials from a variety of sources, including sportswriters from across the nation, broadcasters, track and distance running writers, members of the Hall of Fame, industry sources and distance runners.   “There are so many deserving athletes worthy of inclusion into the Hall and it is always a very difficult selection to make each year.  We received 33 nominees this year, all of which are outstanding individuals with remarkable accomplishments.  Unfortunately there are only eight finalists, which prove the long and thorough process results in difficult decisions.  We are certain we have come up with a worthy slate of candidates,” said Mr. Petrone.

The Hall of Fame’s Advisory Board assists the Directors in making the selection for the nominating class.  The Advisory Board is comprised of individuals such as Allan Steinfeld, former Director of the New York City Marathon; Julia Emmons, Director of the Peachtree Road Race and President of the Atlanta Track Club; Larry Rawson, ESPN Track & Field and Marathon commentator; George Hirsch, Publisher Emeritus of Runner’s World magazine; and Guy Morse, Executive Director of the Boston Athletic Association, among others.

Announcement of the three inductees of the Class of 2005 will take place in a Ceremony at the Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel, as part of the events surrounding the Boston Athletic Association’s Boston Marathon.  As a cooperative partner, the B.A.A. allows the Hall of Fame to announce its new class annually as part of its prestigious event.  Selection of the induction class is made by the votes of the Hall of Fame’s Advisory Board, Executive Board and Hall of Fame Members.

The National Distance Running Hall of Fame is located in Utica, New York, along a stretch of the New York State Thruway that could be called “Hall of Fame Corridor.”  Established in 1998, it currently has 24 members, including Bill Rodgers, Frank Shorter, Alberto Salazar, Grete Waitz, Kathrine Switzer, Joan Benoit Samuelson and the late Steve Prefontaine.  The Hall is dedicated to honoring the sport of distance running and the athletes who have made contributions to the sport, from top runners and the most decorated athletes, to those who pushed the sport’s barriers and eventually broke them. The Hall is housed in a three-story brownstone building and honors these athletes’ talents, initiative and drive through the pictures, memorabilia and awards that decorate the exhibit rooms and pull the visitor into the runner’s world, a place often inhabited by the runner alone as she/he challenges the limits of the human spirit. The Hall’s induction is celebrated at an annual ceremony held in conjunction with the Boilermaker Road Race during Hall of Fame Weekend, the second weekend each July, in Utica, New York. The Hall of Fame offers membership opportunities for road races, clubs, organizations and individuals, at a variety of levels.  More information on this, or other information, can be found at www.distancerunning.com.

Contact: Mary MacEnroe, Hall of Fame, 315.724.4525, macenroe@dreamscape.com.


 

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