The main combatants in 'the greatest 1500m race ever run' will meet again in April. Filbert Bayi, the Tanzanian who took off with about 1490m of the 1974 Christchurch Commonwealth Games 1500m final to run, is in Auckland in April for a black-tie dinner.
The motivation for the visit is the chance to watch the race and more particularly the medal ceremony again with old mate John Walker.
The event is the result of a meeting between Bayi and New Zealand Youth Olympic and Commonwealth Games chef de mission Barry Larsen. At a Commonwealth Games forum in Glasgow, Larsen sought out Bayi, who is a delegate for Tanzania.
"We were chatting about the '74 Games when Filbert told me that although he'd seen the race, he'd never seen footage of the medal ceremony," Larsen said.
On his return home, Larsen sourced the footage from TVNZ. When he again met Bayi, this time at last year's Youth Commonwealth Games in Pune, India, he let him know.
"But I told him I didn't have it on me, that he was going to have to come to New Zealand to see it."
Larsen said the event would not have been possible without buy-in from Walker. The former Olympic champion was keen and has expressed an interest in taking Bayi to a few South Auckland schools to promote his Find Your Field of Dreams project - a foundation aimed at getting kids off the streets and on to sports fields.
Races don't come much more inspirational than the 1974 Commonwealth Games 1500m final.
The capacity QEII Stadium crowd watched astonished as Bayi sprinted to a huge lead and showed no signs of slowing.
Walker closed the gap and by the final 100m, willed on by what some people insist is still the loudest crowd at a New Zealand sports event, seemed as if he might catch Bayi but the Tanzanian held him off to win.
Bayi's 3m 32.16s was a world record by almost 1s, while Walker also bettered Jim Ryun's six-year-old mark.
Five of the seven fastest times ever run were set in this race and five national records - those of Tanzania, Kenya, Australia, Great Britain and New Zealand - were all shattered.
Anybody interested in booking a table for the black-tie dinner, which will be held in the last week of April, should email Barry Larsen at barry@ optimizepdg.co.nz