Double world 5000m champion Hellen Obiri became the second woman in history to win two majors races in a single year when she took the top in a scintillating finish at the 52nd edition of the New York City Marathon, a Platinum Label marathon and the last of six World Marathon Majors held on Sunday (5) in New York, USA.
The 33 year-old was among the first group of eleven athletes that took the lead from the early stages of the race until the 32k mark when Molly Huddle and Kellyn Taylor from the USA pulled away from the lead group but never managed to hold onto the pace that was coming from behind as they were dropped by the world half marathon record holder Letsenbet Gidey from Ethiopia, defending champion Sharon Lokedi, former world record holder Brigid Kosgei and Obiri.
The four surged ahead in a parked form until the remaining 8k mark when they started to outdo each other but with one kilometre to go Kosgei dropped off leaving the three to surge ahead. The last 400m changed the entire race as Obiri accelerated her gear to outpace the world 10,000m record holder Gidey, cutting the tape in a time of 2:27.23 and going into history books as the first woman since Ingrid Kristiansen in 1989 to win the Boston and New York marathons in a single year.
“I was a bit worried because the other ladies were strong, but a marathon is about patience. So I said, ‘Okay, let’s be patient until we get to Central Park, and then see what will happen at the end,” said Obiri
The Tokyo Olympic 10,000m bronze medallist, Gidey, came home in second place seven seconds later with Lokedi left with no other option but to settle in third place in a time of 2:27.33.
Kosgei and Mary Ngugi finished in fourth and fifth place in respective time of 2:27.45 and 2:27.53.
Viola Cheptoo, sister to track legend Bernard Lagat and the oldest athlete on the start list, Edna Kiplagat, who is also the double world marathon champion finished in sixth and seventh in a time of 2:28.11 and 2:29.40 respectively.
|10||Fantu Zewude Jifar||Ethiopia||2:34.10|