Year 2 – 1980

Male winner: Ross Spence; 2:28:22
Female winner: Dale Lyons; 3:21:07

The second Saskatchewan Marathon was run over the same route as the first event and the Western Canada Summer Games Marathon one year earlier. There were 68 entrants in the marathon and a half-marathon distance was incorporated in this year. The half-marathon course was run point-to-point, starting at Griffith’s Stadium and ending near Saguenay Drive on Spadina Crescent. Fifty-seven athletes entered the half-marathon. The half-marathon was won by Russ Jones of Yorkton in a time of 1:11:21.

A reported 100 spectators watched Ross Spence finish in 2:28:22.

For the second year, Ken Arndt was the race director. Just three weeks before the Saskatchewan Marathon, Rosie Ruiz made headlines by cheating in the Boston Marathon. She jumped into the race in the last mile or so and “finished” with a remarkable time of 2:31:56 (but her deception was subsequently discovered and she was disqualified). Race Director Arndt was asked if such a thing could happen in Saskatoon. He replied: “With the control that we have, it can’t happen.  We register each runner’s time and number every five kilometres.”

The early years of the Saskatchewan Marathon certainly attracted what today would be termed ‘elite’ athletes. While today, a four hour time for the marathon distance is an admirable goal, aspired to by many entrants, the bulk of the times in the early days were well under four hours. In fact, in this the second year of the event, the slowest time was 3:41:50.

9am wind: north 15Kmh
7am: 1°C, 11am: 8°C

Ross Spence

008 1980 Spence

Runners near the University Bridge

007 1980 mid-race

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