Wednesday, July 7, 2010

New book spotlights Idaho running

At high school level

Legendary Idaho cross country and track coach Bob Shay is prominently featured in a newly published book about Gem State high school running.

The $20 paperback book, titled "Legends of the Fall: History of Idaho Cross Country," was published July 2. The 368-page book has stories on 52 Idaho high school programs and 27 individual athletes.

Shay, who coached eight Wood River High School state championship teams from 1968-84, is pictured on the book's cover wearing his Wood River cap. Many other familiar Gem State coaches are highlighted speaking about their programs.

A Blaine County School District teacher and coach from 1956-88, Shay died March 26, 2000 at the age of 73. He coached state championship boys' cross country teams in 1968, 1971 and 1972, added girls' XC state titles in 1975, 1983 and 1984, and also won boys' track and field state crowns in 1970 and 1972.

Authors are Firth High School coaches Stewart Portela (track) and Brett Hill (cross country). Each chapter contains numerous photos and quotes speaking of the passion and dedication needed to achieve success in running.

The book's foreword is written by 2008 Olympic mid-distance runner Nick Symmonds, a 2002 Bishop Kelly (Boise) graduate.

To obtain a copy, contact Wood River High School running coach Monte Brothwell at or call 208-764-2432 and 208-351-3468. You can also visit or email to

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