There are few people in the world of the marathon that could be described as a “genius”, but this was the verdict of Chris Brasher, the co-founder of the London Marathon, on James Clarke.

Clarke was chairman of the board of directors of the London Marathon from July 1995 until May 2009. He had been a trustee of the London Marathon Charitable Trust since 1987 and was recently appointed its vice president.

The infant London Marathon was overwhelmed by would-be entrants from its inception in 1981. In those far-off days, before computers had come to the rescue, the race was hopelessly oversubscribed.

Given its helter-skelter genesis it was hardly surprising that Brasher, John Disley and the marathon team had come up with a bizarre entry… FULL ARTICLE

Former London Marathon chairman Clarke dies

By Mike Rowbottom

JIm Clarke_Sept_16

September 16 – Jim Clarke, who served as chairman of the London Marathon from 1995 to 2009 and was instrumental in setting up the entry system for the first event in 1981, has died at the age of 89.

Clarke (pictured), who was awarded the OBE and BEM, had also been a trustee of the London Marathon Charitable Trust since 1987, having been brought into the organisation by co-founder Chris Brasher, who felt his expertise and familiarity with handling mass mail handling operations in his position as chief executive of the pools company Zetters would be ideal for the organising of marathon entries.

Clarke went on to join the London Marathon board in 1991, and was recently appointed vice-president.

London Marathon chief executive Nick Bitel commented: “Jim was a true gentleman, a stalwart who turned out at all London Marathon events to support both the competitors and staff and in all weathers. FULL ARTICLE