Update, October 8, 2023
|Jenny Hitchings, Jeannie Rice, Joan|
The previous world record, 3:38:56, was established by Vera Nystad at last year's Berlin Marathon.
And Rice didn't even have a particularly good day at Chicago. She was running smoothly at 3:28 pace for 30K until she began to feel uncomfortably dizzy. As a result, she had to stop and walk 5 times in the final stages of the marathon. She kept going only because she knew a world record was within reach, and she didn't want to let it slip away.
|With Kelvin Kiptum, 2:00:35, new|
male world record holder.
See below for all the other records Rice has established since turning 75 last April. It's particularly noteworthy that she holds the world record in the metric-mile (1500 meters) and marathon at the same time, as these are considered the two classic events for distance runners. It's believed that only one other athlete, Yoko Nakano (W 80-84), has simultaneously held world records at both distances.
Update: Sept. 17, 2023
In the USATF Masters 12K Championships in Highlands, NJ, Jeannie recorded an age-graded performance of 104.02%, the highest ever in the U.S., according to age-group statistician Tom Bernhard. Her gun time was 54:53, and her chip time, 54:50.
Next up, the Chicago Marathon on October 8.
Update: July 20-23
Competing over the weekend in the 2023 USATF Masters Track Championships (Greensboro, NC), Jeannie Rice broke not just one world record. Not just two world records. But three world records in the F 75-79 division.
She is the new world record holder in the 1500 meters--6:14.88 And the 5000-meters--22:41.46. And the 10,000 meters--46:53.07
The old records were 6:20.93, 22:53.55, and 50:00.93. So Jeannie broke each of those records by a substantial margin.
She also won--are you ready for this?--the 400 meters (1:27.90) and the 800 meters (3:15.22). But, you know, those were just little warmups for Jeannie.
Update, June 24, 2023
Today in Indianapolis, Jeannie Rice won the USATF road mile championship in the 75-79 group with a time of 6:44. That makes her the fastest American woman ever at the road mile distance, and adds the 75-79 record to her existing record for 70-74 (6:22).
UPDATE, April, 2023
On Monday, April 17, 2023, Jeannie Rice ran a race for the ages. Competing in the 127th Boston Marathon just a week after her 75th birthday, Rice finished in 3:33:15 to establish a new world record for the 75-79 age group. The previous record was the 3:38:56 run by Norway’s Vera Nystad at the September, 2022, Berlin Marathon.
(Note: Some groups will not accept records set at Boston, as it is a downhill, point-to-point course. However, anyone who has run Boston knows that it is tougher than a flat course like Berlin, and there was no tailwind on Monday--rather a slight headwind.)
The Boston Marathon does not maintain an age record for the 75-79 category, but Rice smashed the record in the 70-79 category. The previous best mark, 3:48:57, was established by 70-year-old Jean Marmoreo in 2013.
Rice also finished more than 20 minutes ahead of the first male 75-79 runner at Boston. In addition, she ran faster than the best previous time for any male 75-79 runner in Boston history--the 3:35:21 run by Canada’s Keijo Taivassalo in 2015.
In other words, she is the fastest-ever 75+ runner in the Boston Marathon, male or female. It is unlikely that this is true of any other age-group in any other major marathon--that the fastest woman has a better performance than the fastest man.
Rice’s age/sex graded percentage score on the best age calculator is 103.01. That is roughly equivalent to a 2:10:09 performance for a woman in the open (prime of life) category. The actual world record in the open category is 2:14:04.
She’s been getting better ever since, particularly in age-group racing.
In her first major event of 2023, Rice ran 1:41:00 at the Naples FL Half Marathon on January 15. That gave her an Age/Sex Graded Score of 102.9.
She plans to run the Tokyo Marathon in March (at age 74), and the Boston Marathon in April (at age 75).
Rice will turn 75 in early April, 2023, when she hopes to attack many U.S. and World records for the 75-79 age group. She’s almost like Gene Dykes’s twin sister, as they will both hit age 75 within a few weeks of each other. Dykes is skipping Boston to chase the Ningaloo Eclipse, but hopes to run fast marathons in the fall of 2023.
The Boston Marathon does not recognize course bests for F 75-79, only for F 70+. This seems strange since the race does have a separate qualifying time for F 75-79. The Boston record in the F 70+ division is 3:48:57, run by Jean Marmoreo in 2013 when she was 70.
According to the Boston Marathon Race Results Archive, the fastest F 75-79 time since 2001 is the 4:27:43 run by Liz Borrett in 2015 when she was 76.
The current American record in the marathon for women 75-79 is 4:08:31. That mark was set by Ginette Bedard, 75, in the 2008 NYC Marathon.
Jeannie Rice currently holds the below records for American women 70-74.