Boston Billy Rodgers on Kipchoge's 'crazy' marathon record

Boston Billy Rodgers on Kipchoge's 'crazy' marathon record

BOSTON — Bill Rodgers knows a thing or two -- or four-- about phenomenal feats.

"Boston Billy" won the Boston Marathon four times in the late seventies and 1980. It's still amazing.

1975       Bill Rodgers        United States     2:09:55
1978       Bill Rodgers        United States     2:10:13
1979       Bill Rodgers        United States     2:09:27
1980       Bill Rodgers        United States     2:12:11

Content Continues Below

His fastest time was 2 hours, 9 minutes and 27 seconds.

Some said it could never be done, but this weekend Eliud Kipchoge ran a marathon in under two hours. Forty years since Bill's back to back to back to back, the sport has evolved.

"I do think that the marathon is changing. The young athletes of today, they are stronger, but they have more on their side," Rodgers told Boston 25 News Monday.

Runners have more opportunity than ever.

"They have money on their side, better shoes than ever, better support, great coaching," Rodgers said.

With an orchestrated attempt to break the two-hour mark, Kipchoge's feat is astounding.

"He's considered to be the best," Rodgers said.

He ran 26.2 miles averaging 4 minutes and 35 seconds per mile. Nearly a flat-out sprint for even the best athletes.

"When people talked about running a 2-hour, 6-minute, I said they might be crazy," Rodgers said. "This is altitude at work, its group training, serious training camps."

It's also a time with life changing opportunity in the sport, something athletes from around the world are taking advantage of.

"Running and marathoning is not a high-level sport in America," Rodgers said. "I think it is, but most people don’t. But maybe that’s why I won Boston."