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CHRIS BRASHER - father of the London Marathon died

2003-03-04

It is with great regret that London Marathon Limited has learnt of the death of Chris Brasher CBE, President of London Marathon Limited. Chris Brasher, who died at the age of 74 after an illness, was the co-founder of the first London Marathon in 1981 and it is to his unflagging energy and enthusiasm that the event owes its success.

It was after visiting New York in the late seventies that Chris decided London should also stage a big city Marathon. After he had run the marathon in New York he had said: "To believe this story you must believe that the human race be one joyous family, working together, laughing together, achieving the impossible. Last Sunday, in one of the most trouble-stricken cities in the world, 11,532 men and women from 40 countries in the world, assisted by over a million black, white and yellow people, laughed, cheered and suffered during the greatest folk festival the world has seen."

Chris Brasher then asked: "Could London stage such a festival?" The idea of the London Marathon was born - and its story until today is one of enormous success. The inaugural event contributed to the Marathon boom, introducing to the man in the street the belief that he too could share the sense of achievement that covering the classical distance brings. "Chris was one of those rare individuals that could make things happen," commented London Marathon Chairman Jim Clarke. "Without him the race would not have got off the ground. It is also worth remembering that the hundreds of millions of pounds raised for charity through the Marathon are directly attributable to him. He will be sorely missed by all of us at the Marathon," concluded Clarke.

Chris Brasher was a multi-talented individual who worked in television and the written press after a successful career as an elite athlete. In 1954 he helped pace Roger Bannister to the first four minute mile and two years later he claimed his own place in the sun taking the ultimate prize of Olympic steeplechase gold 1956 in Melbourne. He belongs to the founding members of AIMS (Association for International Marathon and road races) in London 1982 and for a time president.

The team of the real,- BERLIN MARATHON mourns for Chris Brasher, a friend and partner.


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