Lelisa Desisa Benti was the men’s winner of the Boston Marathon this morning, with Rita Jeptoo winning the women’s division for the second time in her career.
Benti, who was running just his second marathon (he won earlier this year in Dubai), is a 23-year-old native of Ethiopia who trains with 2009 Boston Marathon champion Deriba Merga. He won in 2 hours, 10 minutes and 22 seconds on an ideal day for runners, with temperatures near 50 at the finish.
“The race was just fine for me,’’ he said. “The downhill was easy, but the uphill was very hard.’’
Micah Kogo of Kenya was second in 2:10:27 with Gebregziabher Gebremariam of Ethiopia third in 2:10:28. Wesley Korir, last year’s winner, was third in 2:12:30. Jason Hartmann of the U.S. was fourth in 2:12:12.
Jeptoo, a 32-year-old Kenyan mother who last won in 2006, finished in an unofficial time of 2 hours, 26 minutes and 25 seconds. Jeptoo fell to her knees after crossing the finish line on Boylston Street and buried her face in her hands in jubilation.
Meseret Hailu of Ethiopia was second in 2:26.58 and Sharon Cherop, the Kenyan who won last year, was third in 2:27.01. Shalane Flanagan of Marblehead, Mass., finished fourth. Portugal’s Anna Dulce Felix led for much of the race, but ran out of gas and the worst moment and finished out of contention.
Womens first place winner Rita Jeptoo at BOSTON MARATHONat the finish line twitter.com/GlobeDavidLRya…
— David L. Ryan (@GlobeDavidLRyan) April 15, 2013
Tatyana McFadden was the women’s wheelchair winner, Hirouyuki Yamamoto was the men’s wheelchair winner.
“It took me almost half the marathon to catch the lead pack,” McFadden, who is headed next to the London Marathon, told WBZ. “The race is not over until you get over the line.”