Nine days' Athletics at the seventh Spartakiad came to a close on Sunday (29 July) as the Soviet Union's Leonid Moseyev provided a fitting climax to the programme with a narrow victory over Japan's Shigeru Soh in the marathon.
SV Sign of Seventh Spartakiad
GV Runners entering stadium at end of marathon
SV Crowd watching as runners round final bend and Soviet Union's Leonid Moseyev (with cap) sprints to the line (2 shots)
SV Crowd on its feet at end of marathon
GV Newsmen surround runners at end of race
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Background: Nine days' Athletics at the seventh Spartakiad came to a close on Sunday (29 July) as the Soviet Union's Leonid Moseyev provided a fitting climax to the programme with a narrow victory over Japan's Shigeru Soh in the marathon. Although the time was well outside the world best for the gruelling twenty-six mile (forty-five kilometre) race, five men were in with a chance of the gold medal as the first runners entered the Lenin stadium, and the crowd was treated to one of the closest finished in marathon history.
SYNOPSIS: As in the Olympics, the marathon was the final event of the seventh Spartakiad. The leading group of five pulled away from the pack as the runners came in sight of the stadium, and fought desperately for their last reserves of strength as they approached the finishing line. The crowd of five thousand rose to the runners as the Soviet Union's Leonid Moseyev, wearing a sporty cap, snatched first place from Japan's Shigeru Soh with an amazing sprint finish. Another Soviet athlete, Viktor Zubov, finished in third place and all three runners were given the same time of two hours thirteen minutes and twenty seconds. It was all good practice for European champion Moseyev, since next year's Olympic marathon will be run along the same riverside course.