Jack Scott? Yep, the same Jack Scott, a central figure in the Patty Hearst case and onetime Bill Walton adviser. Sevene was dubious, but Scott, who lives in Berkeley, Calif. and is now proselytizing for the Acuscope, made his case by saying that it couldn't hurt. "That's the beauty of it," he said. "All other treatments put something damaging into the body to get their effect. Ultrasound can tear you up, Butazolidin and cortisone have their side effects."
"But this," explained Brown, "is electrical stimulus in low, low levels, very much like the current the body works on. Each cell has a charge that it loses when it's hurt or tired out. Recharging it seems to decrease healing time."
"A section of Joan's hamstring on Monday was like Maine mashed potatoes," said Scott.
" Idaho," said Benoit, "but you're right."
Scott treated her knee and hamstring. The treatments, which lasted up to nine hours per day, received a lot of publicity at the trials. "The treatments helped," said Benoit, "but without Stan James's surgery there would have been no need to make use of them." As well, after a couple of runs, Benoit soaked in a tub of ice. "Never heard her whimper," said Scott.
On Tuesday, May 8, now only four days before the trials, Benoit ran 17 miles at a good pace. "It was a mind run," said Sevene. "She had to know she could go the distance." She did, kind of. "Those last six miles are scary," she said on Wednesday. "Anything can happen."
It was, of course, a historic race, this qualifying run for the first-ever Olympic marathon for women. Olympia, which is Washington's capital but has barely 30,000 citizens, put on a fitting display of flags, bands, balloons and crowds. A field of 238 started. Benoit ran at the front in the early miles, but tentatively. "I was comfortable, but tight," she said. "I wasn't aware of the knee, but I always was of the hamstring."
With her were Betty Jo Springs, running her second marathon and pushing it, and Julie Brown, who was intent on making the Olympic team with as little effort as possible, because the women's marathon will be only slightly weakened by the Soviet boycott. " Grete Waitz [victor in last summer's World Championships in Helsinki] is Norwegian; that's all I need to know," said Brown. Right behind bobbed the blondish-brown curls of Lisa Larsen, 22, who as a freshman at Michigan went to the AIAW Nationals, the swimming nationals, as an individual medleyist. A cheerful and immense talent, she has run for only four years. This was her third marathon.
At 12 miles Benoit picked up the pace. "I wanted to run my own race," she said later. "We were doing 5:40 miles. I knew I'd feel better going faster." She quickly built a sizable margin. Springs faded. At 17 miles, Brown took over second. Larsen held third. That looked like the team.
But Benoit was right. With six miles to go, it got scary. Her legs went. "I knew if the pack came on me, I'd be dead." She slowed to six-minute miles.