Brothwell, at 43, wins another marathon

Sentimental return to Great Potato

With apologies to former winners like Emil Magallanes and Mike Carlson, Bellevue Mayor Monte Brothwell has always been the unofficial CEO of the Great Potato Marathon staged in Boise since 1979.

Indeed, Brothwell reigned supreme during the 26.2-mile marathon’s formative years.

From 1980-83, Wood River High School graduate Brothwell was at the peak of his significant running powers.

In that time period he won four consecutive Great Potato Marathons topped by a 2.21:07 clocking in 1982. His best marathon time was 2.17:50 at Portland (Ore.) in 1983, and he competed at the 1984 U.S. Olympic marathon trials in Buffalo, N.Y.

The longtime Atkinsons’ Market employee still takes his regular training runs during his lunch breaks, but Brothwell hadn’t run a marathon since the city of Pocatello sent he and Sun Valley’s Gabriele Andersen to the Hokkaido Marathon at Sapporo, Japan in Sept. 1988. Brothwell was fifth overall ten years ago in Japan, in 2.33:00.

Saturday, Brothwell made what he called "a sentimental return," to the Great Potato.

This time, he didn’t run the 13.1-mile event or the 10-kilometer Great Potato course--shorter runs he has won in the past. This time, at age 43, Brothwell ran the marathon on Great Potato’s 20th anniversary. Amazingly, he won.

Brothwell battled calf cramps the final four miles and finished first in 2.47:07.

"It was neat to get back out," said Brothwell, who estimates he has run 36 or 37 marathons. "I really wasn’t ready for it. I’ve been training 50 miles a week, with zero long runs. I should be taking 16- to 20-mile runs before a marathon."

Someday, Brothwell said he’d like to run the granddaddy of all marathons, Boston.


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