Factoid

Many middle and long distance running events now have pacemakers — runners whose only job is to set a certain speed for a runner, especially in the first half of the race. They usually drop out after a particular point. However, there are some pacemakers who have gone on to win. At the 1994 Los Angeles marathon, pacemaker Paul Pilkington was paid to drop out after setting a fast pace. However, when the runners failed to follow his pace, he kept on going ultimately winning the race. In the 1,500 metres at Bislett Games in 1981 that had star runners like Steve Ovett, the little known pacemaker Tom Byers won the race.

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