Rosie Ruiz stunned the running world when she placed first in the women's division of the 84th Boston Marathon in 1980. The 26-year-old Cuban American crossed the finish line with a time of 2:34:28, all the more impressive considering she didn't break much of a sweat. Ruiz even said she only had been training for a year and a half and had run just one marathon previously, the New York Marathon.
Despite the acclaim Ruiz garnered for her "win," questions immediately surrounded Ruiz's record-breaking performance. Ruiz didn't have the physique of an elite runner. How could a novice runner finish the 26.2-mile event so quickly? Why didn't she know what an interval was during an interview with famed runner Kathrine Switzer? And why didn't any of the leading runners or spectators recall seeing her over the course of the event?
All the suspicions eventually led to Ruiz being stripped of her medal after officials determined she had cut the course. She even cheated in her only other marathon appearance, using the subway to speed her journey, telling fellow passengers that she suffered an injury during the event.
Ruiz didn't face any criminal punishment following the discovery of her fraud, and continues to insist she ran the length of the marathon, despite the overwhelming evidence to prove otherwise.