Ethiopia's Desisa, Kenya's Keitany win in NY
NEW YORK â" By the time Mary Keitany was pacing her way up Manhattanâs First Avenue, she had no reason to look back for challengers. The Kenyanâs lead was growing over the strong womenâs field with every stride, and all she thought about was the finish line.
Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopia didnât break out into a big grin until he pulled away from two opponents late in the race.
In perfect crisp autumn weather for distance runners, Keitany and Desisa won the New York City Marathon on Sunday in near record times.
Keitany, 36, became the second woman to win the marathon four times. She ran the race in 2 hours, 22 minutes, 48 seconds, the second fastest time for the course in history. Margaret Okayo of Kenya set the record of 2:22:31 in 2003.
âI can say the course record was not in my mind,â Keitany said. âFor me, winning was the most important.â
Desisa, 28, held off countr yman Shura Kitata by 1.99 seconds for his first win in New York, joining victories at the Boston Marathon in 2013 and 2015. He finished second in New York in 2014 and third in 2015 and 2017.
âThis is my dream,â Desisa said. âTo be a champion.â
Desisa finished in 2 hours, 5 minutes, 59 seconds, the second fastest time for the course. Geoffrey Mutai of Kenya set the record of 2:05:05 in 2011. Last yearâs winner, Geoffrey Kamworor of Kenya, finished third.
âIâm pretty happy to finish on the podium,â Kamworor said. âI came out the best that I could in the race. I tried my best, and Iâm happy to be third.â
Keitany won in 2014, 2015 and 2016 before coming in second last year to Shalane Flanagan, the first American woman in 40 years to win the New York City Marathon. She joined Grete Waitz, the Norwegian who won the marathon nine times between 1978-1988, as the only women to win the marathon four times.
She and Ethiopians Rahma Tusa and G udeta turned their race to a three-woman field at the 15-mile mark. Keitany pulled away from Tusa and Gudeta at the 19-mile mark, leading Tusa by 26.58 seconds and Gudeta by 43.98 seconds. She extended her lead over Tusa to 1:27.83 at the 21-mile mark.
From that point, the question was not whether Keitany would win. Rather, it was by how much.
She beat countrywoman Vivian Cheruiyot by 3:13.
Flanagan finished third.
âYou have to find motivation, things to focus on,â Flanagan said. âWhen I finally got to third place, I got another level of excitement because I was fighting.â
The United States had four women in the top 10: Molly Huddle was fourth, Desiree Linden sixth and Allie Kieffer seventh.
Four American men also finished in the top 10: Jared Ward was sixth, Scott Fauble was seventh, Shadrack Biwott was ninth and Chris Derrick was tenth.
Daniel Romanchuk became the first American to win the menâs wheelchair division, with a time o f 1:36:21. Romanchuk finished 01.15 seconds ahead of Switzerlandâs Marcel Hug. David Weir of Britain, American Aaron Pike and Australian Kurt Fernley rounded out the top five.
âI need air and Iâm in pain,â said Romanchuk, a 20-year old from Champaign, Illinois, who won the Chicago Marathon last month. âItâs wonderful to be able to win my two Abbott major marathons on American soil. Itâs an amazing experience.âSource: Google News Kenya | Netizen 24 Kenya