Прочитайте рассказ и выполните задания 1–7. В каждом задании обведите букву A, B, C или D, соответствующую выбранному вами варианту ответа.
The London Marathon celebrates its 23rd birthday. That is 23 years of stresses and strains, blisters and sore bits, and incredible tales. Somehow, yours truly has managed to run four of them. And I have medals to prove it. It seemed like a good idea at the time. I watched the inaugural London Marathon on March 29th, 1981. It seemed extraordinary that normal people would want to run 26 miles and 385 yards. And, it must be said, they looked strange and not quite steady at the end of it all. There are, indeed, terrible tales of people losing consciousness by the time they reach that glorious finishing line. But I was captivated. I knew I had to do it.
Three years later I was living in London, not far from Greenwich where the event begins, and it seemed the perfect opportunity to give it a go. I was only a short train ride from the starting line, but more than 26 miles from the finish. “Who cares?” I thought. By the end I did. The moment I crossed that finishing line, and had that medal placed around my neck, was one of the finest in my life. The sense of achievement was immense. It was a mad thing to do, and ultimately pointless. But knowing that I’d run a Marathon – that most historic of all distant races – felt incredible.
London provides one of the easiest of all the officially sanctioned marathons because most of it is flat. Yes, there are the cobblestones while running through the Tower of London, and there are the quiet patches where crowds are thin and you are crying out for some encouragement – those things matter to the alleged “fun” runners like myself, the serious runners don’t think of such things.
This year London will attract unprecedented number of athletes, a lot of title holders among them. It is set to witness what is probably the greatest field ever for a marathon. In the men’s race, for example, among numerous applicants there’s the holder of the world’s best time, Khalid Khannouchi of the USA; the defending champion El Mouriz of Morocco; Ethiopia’s Olympic bronze-medallist Tesfaye Tola. And, making his marathon debut, is one of the finest long distance runners of all time Haile Gebrselassie.
Since 1981, almost half a million people have completed the London Marathon, raising more than $125 million for charity. For the majority of the runners, this is what it is all about. It is for charity, for fun, for self-development. It is a wonderful day. I have run it with poor training, with proper training. And I have always loved it.
It’s crazy, and it’s one of the greatest things I’ve ever done. If you want to feel as though you’ve achieved something, run a marathon.
12. Participation in the London Marathon resulted for the author in
A) stresses and strains.
B) blisters and sore bits.
C) memorable medals.
D) incredible tales.
13. When the author watched the end of the first marathon he saw people who were
A) extraordinary steady.
B) feeling weak and exhausted.
C) losing consciousness.
D) having a glorious time.
14. The reason for the author’s participation in the marathon was the fact that he
A) was fascinated by it.
B) lived not far from its finishing line.
C) wanted to receive a medal.
D) wanted to do something incredible.
15. “By the end I did” means that the author
A) found the distance suitable.
B) found the distance challenging.
C) decided to take part in the marathon.
D) eventually took a train to the finish.
16. According to the author, the London Marathon is one of the easiest because
A) it goes through the Tower of London.
B) there are quiet patches without crowds.
C) many “fun” runners participate in it.
D) its course does not slope up or down.
17. “… the greatest field ever for a marathon” means that the marathon
A) will take place on a big field.
B) is to be run by the famous runners only.
C) will be witnessed by more people.
D) will welcome a huge number of sportsmen.
18. According to the author, one should run the London Marathon to
A) raise money for charity.
B) get some training.
C) feel self-fulfillment.
D) have fun in a crazy way.