Newcomer Sharon Lokedi from Kenya was the surprise winner at the 50th edition of the TCS New York City Marathon, a World Athletics Platinum Race and a World Marathon Major competition held on Sunday (06) in New York.
Lokedi who is a fiance to the17-time NCAA champion collegiate distance runner for the University of Oregon, Edward Cheserek, became the 8th person in New York City marathon history, man or woman, to win in her marathon debut in a personal best of 2:23.23.
The 28 year-old was followed by the World bronze medallist, Kenyan-born Israeli Lonah Chemtai Salpeter who crossed the line in second in 2:23.30 with the reigning World marathon champion Gotytom Gebrselase from Ethiopia coming home in third place in 2:23.39.
When Lokedi was 14, her family fled their home village of Burnt Forest that became an area of violence after a Kenyan presidential election. For a month, the family lived with no shelter or a steady source of food before returning after the conflict ended.
Two times World Marathon champion Edna Ngeringwony Kiplagat came home in fourth with Viola Cheptoo who finished behind Olympic champion Peres Jepchirchir on her marathon debut in the American city last year crossing the line in fifth in 2:25.34.
Double World 5000m champion Hellen Obiri who was also making her marathon debut finished in sixth place with a personal best of 2:25.49 with former Kenyan now trading for United States Aliphine Tuliamuk finishing in seventh place in 2:26.18.