Boston Marathon sweep for Kenya, but not favorite Kipchoge
Defending champion Evans Chebet of Kenya won the Boston Marathon again on Monday, surging to the front at Heartbreak Hill to spoil the much-anticipated debut of world record holder Eliud Kipchoge and win in 2 hours, 5 minutes, 54 seconds.
Hellen Obiri, a two-time Olympic silver medalist in the 5,000 meters, won the women's race in a sprint down Boylston Street to finish in an unofficial 2 hours, 21 minutes, 38 seconds, and complete the Kenyan sweep.
Chebet, 2021 winner Benson Kipruto of Kenya and Gabriel Geay of Tanzania dropped Kipchoge from the lead pack around Mile 20 and then ran together for the last three miles. Geay won a footrace for second, 10 seconds behind the winner and 2 seconds ahead of Kipruto.
Kipchoge, a 12-time major marathon winner, was sixth. Scott Fauble was the top American, finishing seventh.
Kipchoge had been hoping to add a Boston Marathon victory to his unprecedented running resume. The 38-year-old has won two Olympic gold medals and four of the six major marathons; Boston is the only one he has competed in and failed to win. (He has never run New York.) He also broke 2 hours in an exhibition in a Vienna park.
Fighting a trace of a headwind and rain that dampened the roads, Kipchoge ran in the lead pack from the start in Hopkinton until the series of climbs collectively known as Heartbreak Hill. But to the surprise of the fans lined up along Boylston Street for the final sprit, he wasn't among the three leaders.
Hug, Scaroni take Boston Marathon wheelchair titles
A familiar name returned to the top of the podium and another one got there for the first time in the wheelchair division at the 127th Boston Marathon.
Marcel Hug of Switzerland captured his sixth men’s wheelchair Boston Marathon title, claiming the victory Monday in a course record of 1 hour, 17 minutes, 6 seconds in the first race of the day. It bests his previous course mark of 1:18:04 set in 2017. American Daniel Romanchuk was second in 1 hour, 27 minutes, 45 seconds, followed by Jetze Plat of the Netherlands in 1 hour, 28 minutes, 35 seconds.
In the women’s race, American Susannah Scaroni won her first Boston title, crossing the line in 1 hour, 41 minutes, 45 seconds. Her victory followed runner-up finishes in 2018 and 2022. She was followed by Madison de Rozario of Australia in 1 hour, 46 minutes, 55 seconds, and Wakako Tsuchida of Japan in 1 hour, 47 minutes, 4 seconds.
Hug's win was the second-largest in the Boston wheelchair race's history. He received $25,000 for the victory and a $50,000 bonus for setting the new course mark.
The 37-year-old Hug surged to the front of the field on a foggy and drizzly morning, leading the majority of the 26.2-mile course a year after withdrawing before the race for medical reasons. Hug also broke the course record in Saturday’s 5K race as well.
Scaroni built a 20-second lead early before having to stop briefly to adjust a loose right wheel about 10 miles in. She dealt with the issue and returned to the race.
Other Race Highlights
For the first time, the race also includes a nonbinary division, with 27 athletes registered. Kae Ravichandran, of Vermont, finished first in the division with a time of 2 hours, 38 minutes, 57 seconds.
A dozen former champions and participants from 120 countries and all 50 states were in the field of 30,000 running 10 years after the finish line bombing that killed three people and wounded hundreds more. The race also included 264 members of the One Fund community — those injured by the attack, their friends and family and charities associated with them.
The city marked the anniversary in a ceremony on Saturday.
A robotic dog named Stompy belonging to the Department of Homeland Security patrolled the start line before the race began, trailed by photographers capturing the peculiar sight. Officials said there were no known threats.
At 6 a.m., race director Dave McGillivray sent out a group of about 20 from the Massachusetts National Guard that hikes the course annually. Capt. Kanwar Singh, 33, of Malden, Massachusetts, said it’s a special day.
“Ten years ago, the city came to a halt. It’s an incredibly strong comeback, as a group together,” he said. “I tell people, never bet against Bostonians.”
This article was originally published on April 17, 2023.