Kathrine Switzer

Photo: Michael Doyle.

The Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.), the organization that puts on the Boston Marathon, retired women’s running pioneer Kathrine Switzer’s race bib from 1967 on Tuesday.

Switzer, who is the first woman to have completed Boston wearing an official race number, famously ran the 1967 Boston Marathon under the name “K.V. Switzer.” Fifty years later, Switzer, 70, once again finished Boston, running 4:44:31 on Monday. The race number retirement ceremony took place outside of the Boston Marathon Adidas RunBase approximately 24 hours after the marathon.

According to BBC News, Switzer has run the Boston Marathon nine times including her iconic 1967 race during a time when woman were not permitted to run the iconic road race. One year prior, Roberta “Bobbi” Gibb became the first woman to run the entire Boston Marathon though that was without a race number.

Live video

The women’s running icon, who ran as part of the 261 Fearless team this year, recalled the 1967 race on Monday in which race official Jack Semple famously tried to grab Switzer’s race number, 261, and pull her off-course because of the race’s ban on women. “He helped change history,” she says. Women were first permitted to run Boston in 1972.


Leave a Reply