Rita Jeptoo, who won the Boston Marathon in 2006 and 2013, has conquered the race once again, breaking the course record today with a finishing time 2:18:57. She is 33 years old.
She almost didn't come back to defend her title after the tragedy that occurred last year, but ultimately decided to compete again. She told reporters on Friday,
For the last year, it's not good, but I was thinking this year is not the same as last year. This year will be better than last year. And I hope we are going to run and [there will be] no problems again.
Boston's hometown favorite Shalane Flanagan set the record pace early on, and she was leading the main pack halfway through. Despite training on the course this year, she faded on Heartbreak Hill. Last year, she came fourth, and she was determined to win this year for Boston.
Flanagan told the AP before the race,
If I could have one wish, it would be to win this specific race on this specific day. It basically would be the highlight of my career, for sure.
If I could win this specific Boston: It has the most power, the most meaning behind it, of all the Boston Marathons that would be run.
She would have been the first American, man or woman, to win the race since 1985.
In the men's race, American Meb Keflezighi is dominating the field with just a few miles to go. Keflezighi, who was born in Eritrea and became a citizen in 1998, would be the first American man to win Boston since 1983.