What does it take to chase down a lifelong dream, even after you’ve failed three times? And why have thousands of people put the Boston Marathon at the top of their bucket list
Long Road to Boston combines the history of the world’s most coveted marathon with the personal journey of one ordinary runner who seeks to fulfill his ultimate amateur athletic goal. Tracing back to the marathon’s roots in Greek mythology and sharing the stories of the many colourful and inspiring characters who have crossed Boston’s finish line, the book explores why modern runners challenge themselves with such ambitious goals and revels in the reward of a persistent dream achieved.
Since the first edition in 1897, more than 640,000 runners have travelled the hallowed path. The Boston Marathon isn’t just the oldest marathon in the world, but the most esteemed. Every year, thousands of runners across the planet try to meet its challenging qualifying times, dreaming of stepping into more than a century of history. Some make it, others fall short and try again. Since the devastating finish-line bombing in 2013, the reverence and demand for the Boston Marathon has only increased.
As the founder and back-page columnist of iRun magazine and the host of its radio show and podcast, Mark Sutcliffe has interviewed hundreds of runners who have chased Boston. And over the course of more than five years and more than a dozen marathons, he too closed in on his qualifying time, failing repeatedly, for one reason or another, before finally earning a place in the 2015 edition.