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BOSTON MARATHON: Americans Desiree Linden, Sarah Sellers finish 1-2

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Desiree Linden celebrates her historic finish. (Charles Krupa / Associated Press)

WASHINGTON POST – Brutal conditions? A nasty head wind? A chilly rain? None of those things stopped Desiree Linden, who became the first American woman to win the Boston Marathon since 1985, streaking away from the field as American women nabbed five of the six top spots at the finish line.

Linden, a 34-year-old from Michigan, overcame the heartbreak of 2011, when she finished second in the marathon by two seconds, and won in an unofficial time of 2:39:54.

The veteran long-distance runner who competed in the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, where she placed seventh, finished ahead of American Sarah Sellers, who was second in 2:44:05 for the first 1-2 finish in Boston by American women since 1979. American Rachel Hyland was fourth in 2:44:29. Nicole Demurcio was fifth in 2:45:52 and Shalane Flanagan, helped along the way by Linden, after a rest-stop detour delayed her was sixth in 2:46:31. Canada’s Krista Duchene was third in 2:44:20.

Linden told before the race that she likes to bide her time until around the 30K mark for the marathon, then make a move. That’s just what she did Monday. “It’s kind of like the blinders go up at that point,” she said.

Jessi Miller Bradley@JessiWBZ
The moment Des Linden made the move and got out front
The call with @LisaWBZ @LevanReid @KVSwitzer

The last women’s winner in Boston? Lisa Larsen Rainsberger (then competing as Lisa Larsen Weidenbach).

The American women weren’t the only U.S. athletes performing well. Japan’s Yuki Kawauchi was the men’s winner in 2:10:46, but Americans Shadrack Biwott and Tyler Pennel were third and fourth, respectively.

It was a nasty day for a race, with officials announcing that the temperature of 38 degrees at the 8:40 a.m. Eastern time start in Hopkinton, Mass., made this the coldest start in 30 years.

That meant that runners were coping with a different kind of misery this year, after last year’s 80-degree temperatures. Runners may love temperatures in the 40s, but not when rain and a blustery wind is added. Just look at Galen Rupp, who finished second in the elite men’s field last year. He had a unique approach Monday to staying warm, bundling up like he was about to rob a bank.

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NBC Sports@NBCSports
Oh hey, Galen Rupp
“The cold, the wet and the rain — that’s the three worst things you can have, and you have that in one race,” Abdi Abdirahman, a four-time United States Olympian said (via the New York Times) on the eve of the race. “A lot of guys have been talking about it, trying to be the tough guy and say, ‘Oh, I’m not worried about it, I will just have to deal with it.’ But you know, we will find out how many people are still intact after 30K.”
Officials coped with the weather by giving runners two bibs, one for their outer garments or ponchos. Those bibs, though, have just the numbers on them. The bib with runners’ names are underneath a layer or two. (In case you were wondering why there were bibs with names and numbers.)


Alistair Cragg@alistaircragg
Boston Marathon
Shortly before 11 a.m., the first competitor crossed the finish line. Marcel Eric Hug of Switzerland won his fourth consecutive title in the men’s push rim wheelchair race in an unofficial time of 1:41:49, the slowest time in 31 years. Tatyana McFadden won her fifth women’s push rim wheelchair title and her 22nd overall in world marathon majors, the most of any women’s wheelchair athlete. McFadden’s unofficial time was 2:04:39, the slowest in 30 years.
Flanagan made a pit stop as she ran the route, ducking into a port-a-potty.

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Chris Chavez@ChrisChavez
WOAH. Shalane Flanagan pulls over to the side to head into a port-a-potty and is now clawing her way back. .
The man who captured the explosions looks back

Five years later, Steve Silva recalled being at the finish line and shooting video of the explosions that was shared globally. “It wasn’t a bone-rattling explosion like you might imagine — more of a muffled thud with a large plume of smoke that ran straight up the mid-level buildings on that block of Boylston,” Silva writes.

“My first thought was that it might have been a fireworks celebration that perhaps went awry for the Hoyts’s finish. But 13 seconds later, the second explosion went off just over a block away. ‘We’ve had an attack,’ I said into the camera’s microphone.

After two black men were arrested while waiting at a Philadelphia Starbucks on April 12, the company and the police are facing fierce criticism. (Jenny Starrs/The Washington Post)

“In a split-second, I went from sports video producer to accidental war correspondent.”

Read more about his experience here.

Looking for a specific runner or time?

The field of 29,960 athletes includes runners from all 50 states (4,921 from Massachusetts) and 109 countries. You can find runners by searching the field at

A physician comes full circle, running Monday

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Boston Marathon@bostonmarathon
Dr. Peter Smulowitz was finishing his shift at @BIDMChealth on Monday April 15, 2013 when he and his team got news of the Boston Marathon bombing. He worked overtime that day, and has felt drawn to the marathon since. This year he will run it himself.
Security restrictions …
Security for the 26.2-mile race has been tightened since 2013 and spectators, who are expected to number more than 50,000, are reminded of what is and is not allowed, particularly close to the finish line.


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spectators asked not to bring weapons, suitcases, coolers, glass containers, costumes or props 

At least five transgender runners entered the race

Marathon organizers are not concerned about gender boundaries, saying that transgender runners can compete using the gender they qualified with.

At least five openly transgender women have signed up to run the race, and a BAA official told Runner’s World that race officials and volunteers would compare gender identity on the government-issued ID required to pick up a bib number with what’s on runners’ entries.

If there’s no match, a BAA spokesperson told Runner’s World that it would be addressed “in a manner intended to be fair to all concerned, with a strong emphasis on inclusion.”

“We take people at their word. We register people as they specify themselves to be,” Tom Grilk, who heads up the Boston Athletic Association, told the Associated Press. “Members of the LGBT community have had a lot to deal with over the years, and we’d rather not add to that burden.”

Amelia Gapin, a transgender woman from Jersey City, heads up a social media group for trans runners and told the AP: “It’s kind of murky how people handle it. We are such a small percentage of the population that we generally just fly under the radar.”

Play ball? Not today.

Weather forced postponement of that other Patriots Day tradition, the 11 a.m. Red Sox game against the Orioles at Fenway Park, for the first time since 1984.

Japanese runners once dominated the Boston Marathon

There was a time when runners from Japan ruled the Boston Marathon and The Post’s Kathryn Tolbert takes a look back at the slurs and prejudice they endured years after the end of World War II. Read the story in Retropolis.

—— AUTO – GENERATED; Published (Halifax Canada Time AST) on: April 16, 2018 at 02:14PM

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