Tuesday, January 13, 2015

V.5 N. 3 Jim Hogan R.I.P.

One of the familiar faces and episodes in the 1964 Olympic Film was Jim Hogan running after Bikila in the marathon, but finally succumbing to the wall and dehydration and literally  begging for water while sitting on the curb of the road.    We knew little of this game runner but some of his history is revealed in this following story from the Irish Times.   R.I.P, Jim and we'll remember your efforts.  

These were our words about Jim Hogan a few months ago when describing the 1964 Olympic Marathon. 

 Ron Clarke, running his first high level marathon, is out to make up for what has been a disappointing Olympics so far. He and Jim Hogan of Ireland lead through 15K, but by 20K it is Abebe Bikila who has taken over. Clarke would say later, “I know now that marathon running takes special training”. Hogan is the only one to stick with the defending champion, but by 25K Bikila's lead is 10 seconds. At 30K it is 40 seconds and by 35K it has grown to 2:26. Shortly thereafter Hogan's brave effort to stay with the great Ethiopian takes its toll and he retires.

He appears at 5 min. 30 sec. of this youtube clipof the race.


I also found this tribute to Jim from his nephew Vybarr Cregan-Reid
on his blog in 2013.  Apparently Jim was a proponent of barefoot running.


From the Irish Times Jan. 13, 2015

From the Irish Times Jan. 13, 2015

Former Olympian Jim Hogan passes away

‘The Irishman Who Ran For England’ died peacefully on Saturday, aged 81

Irish athlete Jim Hogan in action during a Cross Country race on Epsom Downs, 18th January 1964. Photograph: Bob Thomas/Getty Images
Irish athlete Jim Hogan in action during a Cross Country race on Epsom Downs, 18th January 1964. Photograph: Bob Thomas/Getty Images
The only thing we knew for sure about Jim Hogan was that his name wasn’t actually Jim Hogan. He was born Jim Cregan, in Croom hospital in Limerick, on May 28th 1933, and if not one of Ireland’s most successful distance runners, he was certainly one of our most enigmatic.
In 1960, when first moving to England to find work, he changed his surname to Hogan: over the next four years he made several international appearances for Ireland, most famously at the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, where he was the last man left chasing defending marathon champion Abebe Bikila, from Ethiopia. All Hogan had to do was to stay on his feet, keep moving forward, and an Olympic silver medal was his. Then, just after 23 miles, he dropped out, truly dehydrated.
Two years later, at the European Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hogan truly conquered the distance, winning the marathon title in 2:20:04 - still the only Irish man to win a European championship gold medal. Hogan, however, was actually wearing an English vest, having switched allegiance in 1965 due to his increasing dissatisfaction with the officialdom of Irish athletics.
Hogan also ran the 1968 Olympic marathon, again as part of the British team. This and other issues were the subject of his book, The Irishman Who Ran For England, published in 2008. In the preface, Britain’s legendary distance runner David Bedfordwrites: “He (Jim) overcame enormous odds and antipathy but he prevailed. I know Jim has no regrets about his career either.”
During that period Hogan also set a world record for 30km on the road, running 1:32:25, and also a European Indoor three-mile record of 13:37.2.
In his later years he returned to Limerick, settling in Knocklong, and after the death of his wife Mary, dedicated much of his life to the horse racing world, breaking and training horses well into his 70s. He died peacefully on Saturday, aged 81, and his funeral mass takes place at noon tomorrow, Monday, at St John The Baptist Church, Athlacca.

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