Mary Keitany of Kenya wins 3rd straight New York City Marathon

Just 48 hours out from Election Day, no one was with her.

Kenya’s Mary Keitany, the two-time defending champion of the New York City Marathon, broke free of all challengers by the half-marathon mark in Queens, and kept her speed up along First Ave. in Manhattan to the Bronx and finally Central Park. She completed the 26.2-mile footrace in 2:24:26 to become the first runner to claim a third consecutive crown since Grete Waitz won five straight from 1982-1986. It was the 40th anniversary of the race running through all five boroughs; race director Peter Ciaccia wrapped a Kenyan flag around Keintany’s shoulders at the finish line. Her husband Charlie and two children, Jared and Samantha, hugged her.

Kenyan Sally Kipyego came in second place at 2:28:01 while American Molly Huddle, running her first competitive marathon, came in third at 2:28:13.

On the men’s side, Ghirmay Ghebreslassie of Eritrea won in 2:07:51. The defending champion, Stanley Biwott, bowed out before the 15K mark due to injury. Ghebreslassie looked over his shoulder while crossing over the Third Ave. Bridge from the Bronx into Manhattan. He looked over his shoulder again on Fifth Ave., but had already pushed far ahead of his top competitor, Lucas Rotich. After being given his country’s flag, Ghebreslassie ran back into the course and Rotich, a minute behind, high fived him.

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Biwott issued a statement about his inability to finish.

American Molly Huddle races to a third-place finish in her first competitive marathon.

American Molly Huddle races to a third-place finish in her first competitive marathon.

(Marcus Santos)

“I feel very upset since I came to New York to defend my title, ” Biwott said. “I had a calf problem three weeks ago but I went through treatment and I felt ready. I had to realize that I could not make it to the finish line.”

Conditions were near idyllic with temperatures at 58 degrees and cloudless skies most of the race for the elite runners and a brilliant sun overhead. A headwind blew early on as Tatyana McFadden won the women’s wheelchair race in 1:47:43 and Marcel Hug, of Switzerland, took the men’s wheelchair marathon in 1:35:49.

Keitany, a 34-year-old mother of two, improved her lead over compatriot Joyce Chepkirui to more than two minutes with five miles left on the course. Keitany continued her stretch of dominance in the world’s marathons that traces back to her first win, in London, in 2011. She has since posted a personal best of 2:18:37 in the 2012 London Marathon, and took off in 2013 to have a second child. She has owned the streets of New York since, finishing in 2:24:25 last year and 2:25:07 in 2014. -30

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mary keitany
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Source: NY Daily News Headlines Sports News

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