2014 Boston Marathon champion Meb Keflezighi will be back this year to defend his title.
Keflezighi was the first American runner to win the men's open race in 31 years when he broke the tape first on Boylston Street last year. After winning the 2014 race in Boston, Keflezighi went on to finish fourth in the New York Marathon last November.
"I am so excited to run the 2015 Boston Marathon," Keflezighi said in a statement. "My win in the 2014 Boston Marathon will always be the most significant victory of my career."
Another runner is hoping she will get to say the same thing one day. Shalane Flanagan, who grew up in Marblehead watching her father run the marathon, has always dreamed of winning Boston -- and she's come close. In 2012 she finished fourth, and last year she ran the fastest-ever time by an American woman on the Boston Marathon course — 2 hours, 22 minutes and 2 seconds. After Boston, she went on to finish third in last fall's Berlin Marathon.
"I grew up on the sidelines of this race," Flanagan said. "This marathon represents what it means to run with everything you have. Last year that's what I did and this year will be no different because this is Boston and that's just what you do."
Other members of the U.S. elite team competing in the Boston Marathon this year include Desiree Davila Linden, who finished second in the 2011 Boston Marathon. Three-time Olympian Dathan Ritzenhein, who was supposed to run in 2014 but had to withdraw because of any injury, will also be there.
The field of elite international runners who will run in the April 20 race will be announced later this month.
This article was originally published on January 07, 2015.