Dave Bedford has announced his decision to leave his role as a consultant with London Marathon Events, which includes recruiting the elite fields for the London Marathon and all other running events organised by the company. He will step down in November.
Bedford, a legendary runner on the track and the former 10,000m world record holder, has played a pivotal role with the London Marathon for more than three decades. He famously ran the first edition of the race in 1981 following a bet in his night club. Over the years, he served on the Board of Directors from 1986 – 1988, representing British Athletics and in 1989 was appointed to recruit the London Marathon elite field. He became London Marathon Race Director in 2000, a role he held until 2012 when he became a part-time consultant. He also played a leading role in the formation of the World Marathon Majors.
Nick Bitel, CEO of London Marathon Events Ltd, said: “The London Marathon is deeply indebted to Dave for all that he has done for the event over the years. During his tenure as Marketing and Sponsorship Director and then as Race Director, he was instrumental in developing the London Marathon into the world’s greatest marathon and most successful one-day annual charity fundraising event. Time and time again he has recruited the world’s greatest athletes and masterminded unforgettable elite races and world records. He will be greatly missed and we wish him well.”
Bedford said: “I have been fulfilled working with the London Marathon for many years. London Marathon’s growth and success was only possible because of the great team I worked with. We should not forget, however, that the success of the London Marathon was only possible because of the hard work done by Chris Brasher and John Disley in founding the event.”
David Bedford was born on 30 December 1949. He is a former GB international long distance athlete and set the 10,000m world record on 13 July 1973 when he recorded 27:30.80. He also held the British Records for all distances from 2000m to 10,000m, including the 3000m steeplechase. He finished sixth in the 10,000m at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich. He has also served as Chairman of the IAAF Road Running Commission. He currently is a Non-Executive Director of UK Athletics and a Director of Hendon Football Club. He was awarded the OBE in 2014 for his services to athletics and charity fundraising.