This weekend saw Stockholm commemorate the marathon runners who took part in the 1912 Olympics with its centenary event. Of the 68 competitors who embarked on the race a century ago, Shizo Kanakuri's journey was perhaps the longest, with the Japanese runner recoding a time of a little over 54 years and 8 months.
Known as the 'Father of Marathon' in his native country, Kanakuri (1891-1983) inscribed his name in Olympic folklore after straying off-course along the Stockholm route. At around 27km, with the Japanese runner seriously dehydrated and losing consciousness, Kanakuri was taken to the house of a local family who assisted in his recovery.
After his rehabilitation, Kanakuri led a relatively successful running career, competing at the 1920 Olympics in Belgium and establishing one of the most popular long-distance events in Japan, the Tokyo-Hakone Round-Trip College Ekiden Race.
In 1967, and with Kanakuri aged 75, the Japanese runner was invited to finish the race he began half a century earlier. As he crossed the line, the announcement sounded: "The finishing time is 54 years, 8 months, 6 days, 5 hours, 32 minutes and 20.3 seconds."
With organisers looking to commemorate the runners who took part in the 1912 event, Kanakuri's great-grandson, Yoshiaki Kurado, 25, was invited to this year's race. While not boasting the kind of pedigree of his great-grandfather, Kurado said in the lead-up to the event: "I am not confident, but I want to run the entire distance."
Saturday's Jubilee race saw Kurado complete the marathon in 4:25:01. In another fitting tribute to the Japanese 'Father of Marathon', organisers located the house in which he was cared for, and used the site as a refreshment area for runners.