In order to claim that there can be only one winner, we have to look at the definiton of winning. If we consider winning to be placing first, then yes, there is only one. However, there is more to running the the top three. Winning is crossing the finish line, no matter what place. If runners truly believed that there was only one winner, then we wouldn't race. This is not a sport llike football or basketball where the winner is easy to determine through points.
In fact, in the statistical analysis I'm doing of this year's Boulder Backroads half MArathon, running produces a smooth postive distribution curve. There are more runners to the right of the mean, in the slower time catagories then in the faster times. The mode average pace is 9:00 miles. I'm not done with the anaylsis yet, but the middle of the pack is where the runners are, not out in front.
Everyone wins in time
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