Olympic champion Peres Jepchirchir held off Ethiopia’s Ababel Yeshaneh in the final stretch of the women’s race down Boylston Street after a thrilling battle in the closing stages. Jepchirchir crossed the finish line in 2:21:01 to win the 50th edition of the Boston women’s race.
The race started slowly and the first five miles were run in 28:04 at a 2:27 pace. The pace picked up and the leading group ran the fastest 11 miles ever run in Boston marathon history and went through at 21 km in 69:41.
The leading pack was whittled down to only Jepchirchir, Yeshaneh and last year’s London Marathon winner Joyciline Jepkosgei. They remained in the lead at 25 km and stayed together until the 37 km mark, when Jepkosgei lost the ground. The pace slowed down. Jepchirchir and Yeshaneh ran the 21 mile split in 5:52 on the uphill section of the course and the following 24th downhill mile split in 5:17.
Jepchirchir and Yeshaneh ran shoulder to shoulder for most of the race and traded leads seven times in the final mile. Jepchirchir dug deep and pulled away in the final 300 metres beating Yeshaneh by four seconds.
Jepchirchir ran the final mile split in 5:23.
Jepchirchir completed the hat-trick by adding the Boston title to the Olympic gold medal and the New York marathon win in 2021. The 28-year-old Kenyan runner has won her fifth consecutive race since Saitama 2019. In December 2020 she also won the Valencia Marathon setting her lifetime best of 2:17:16.
Peres Jepchirchir: “It means a lot to win Boston. I know that there are more more wins to come. The course is tough, but I thank God that I managed to win the race. I thought that Ababel was feeling strong. I pushed the pace and I felt tired. I fell behind, but I didn’t lose hope. I am feeling grateful and honoured”
Mary Ngugi finished third in 2:21:32 beating two-time world champion Edna Kiplagat, who crossed the finish-line in 2:21:40 at the age of 42. Monicah Ngige from Kenya rounded out the top-five in 2:22.13 beating last year’s New York marathon second placer Viola Cheptoo (2:23:47).
Charlotte Purdue from Great Britain was the top European finisher in ninth place in 2:25:28. Olympic bronze medallist Molly Seidel ran in the leading pack in early stages of the race and reached the halfway mark in 11th before dropping out of the race before the 30 km.
Men’s race: Chebet wins his first World Majors race
Kenya’s Evans Chebet won the 126th edition of the Boston Marathon in 2:06:51.
Chebet led a Kenyan podium sweep beating his compatriots Lawrence Cherono (2:07:21) and Benson Kipruto (2:07:27). Cherono and Kipruto had won the previous two editions of the Boston Marathon in 2019 and 2021.
The lead pack of 20 runners ran together at halfway going through in 1:03:24. Fifteen runners were still together in the lead pack when they reached the Heartbreak Hill when Chebet made his decisive move. Gabriel Geay from Tanzania, who clocked his PB of 2:04:55 in Milan in 2021, was the only runner able to keep pace with Chebet. Kipruto and Cherono led the chasing group 15 seconds behind Chebet.
Chebet covered the downhill 5 km split between 35 to 40 km in 13:55.
Cherono desperately tried to close the gap on Chebet in the final stages of the race, but it was too late.
Chebet clocked 4:37 in the 25th mile to secure the win with a gap of 30 seconds over Cherono, who crossed the finish-line six seconds ahead of Kipruto. Geay finished fourth in 2:07:53. Eric Kiptanui completed the top five in 2:08:47 beating last year’s New York Marathon champion Albert Korir by three seconds. Scott Fauble was the top US finisher in seventh place in 2:08:52 ahead of Ethiopia’s Jemal Yimer (2:08:58). The top-12 finishers dipped under the 2:10 barrier.
Chebet won his first World Majors Marathon race after three previous victories in Buenos Aires in 2019 in 2:05:00, Valencia in 2:03:00 and Otsu in 2:07:29 in 2020. He also finished second in Milan in 2:07:22 in 2019 and fourth in London in 2021 in 2:05:43. He had achieved top four finishes in the previous 12 marathon races.
Evans Chebet: “I knew my competitors were capable of a lot. I had to ensure that I was ahead of them to guarantee my win”
US Daniel Romanchuk won the wheelchair race in 1:26:58 repeating his Boston win in 2019. Manuela Schaer claimed her fourth title in the women’s wheelchair title in Boston in 1:41:08.
The Boston Marathon returned to the Patriot’s Day for the first time since the start of the pandemic.