For the first time since 1985, an American has won the Boston Marathon. Meb Keflezighi, 38, of California beat Wilson Chebet of Kenya with an impressive time of 2:08:37. Chebet trailed Keflezighi by only 11 seconds.
Keflezighi was a silver medalist in the 2004 Olympics and also won the New York Marathon in 2009. He immigrated to the United States from Eritrea when he was 12.
He wore the names of the victims of last year’s bombings on his runner’s bib, along with the name of the police officer shot a few days later in the insinuating manhunt for the bombers.
— Boston Marathon JH (@jhboston26) April 21, 2014
The last American to win the men’s marathon was Greg Meyer in 1983. The last American woman to win the title was Lisa Larsen-Weidenbach in 1985, ESPN reports.
The 36,000 runners and spectators went through especially tight security this year, but those there insist the race atmosphere had a celebratory air. Marathon director Dave McGillivray said, “We’re taking back our race. We’re taking back the finish line.”
The women’s marathon was won for the second time in a row by Rita Jeptoo, 33, of Kenya.