Day: April 25, 2011

National Tribute to Grete Waitz Planned

     Now official, a Norwegian national tribute to Grete Waitz will be held at Bislett Stadium in Oslo on Wednesday May 11 at 5PM.  Grete’s husband Jack  has met with, among others, a representative from the Prime Minister’s office. The Tribute, will be open for everybody, and then there will be a reception, also at Bislett, afterwards.

Arguably, the greatest female distance runner in history with five world cross country titles, a World Championships Marathon gold medal (1983) and Olympic silver (1984) to go along with nine New York City, and two London Marathon titles, and four marathon world records, Grete Waitz died last Monday night in her sleep in her hometown of Oslo at age 57 after battling cancer for six years. 

As a girl, Grete Anderson both trained and raced at Bislett Stadium winning numerous national championships as a junior and senior level competitor.  Twice she set world records on the historic oval. First in June 1975 she ran 8:46.6 for 3000 meters.  One year later she lowered the mark to 8:45.4.  Her 1500 (4:00.55) and 3000 meter (8:31.75) times remain Norwegian national records.  A bronze statue of Grete (pictured above) was erected in 1984 to commemorate what was a still-building legacy of greatness.