>Frankly, a career of 13 races really doesn't
>sound like much. Can't that be describved with
>reasonable accuracy as "too short"?
Not by marathoner standards. 13 marathons is more than Khannouchi has run, and I don't any reasonable observer would call him a flash in the pan. Jim Peters' career was of similar length; when he died, none of his obits referred to a "short career". Ken Young ( http://www.mattoleriver.com
) keeps track of all-time win streaks; no sub-2:14 marathoner has ever beaten Bikila's six wins in a row.
There were few non-championship marathons of international standing in the 1960's; pretty much just Beppu-Oita, Boston, Fukuoka, Kosice, and Lake Biwa. Bikila won both Kosice and Lake Biwa in '61, and Lake Biwa again in '65. Back then, it was even harder to get the world's top marathoners together than it is now.
Bikila also reportedly ran marathon time trials in 1960 and '64 that were each within 2 minutes of the then-standing WR. He ran them at over 6000 feet of altitude.