An Ethiopia runner eked out his first New York City Marathon win Sunday, finishing the 26.2-mile race just 2 seconds ahead of a countryman.
“Today is my day. I am very, very happy,” said men’s winner Lelisa Desisa, 28, after the race. “This year, I decided to champion.”
Desisa won the marathon with a time of 2 hours, 5 minutes and 59 seconds. He averaged 4 minutes and 49 seconds per mile.
Ethiopian Shura Kitata, 22, came in second with a time of 2 hours, 6 minutes and 1 second.
Desisa and Kitata both finished before defending champion Geoffrey Kamworor, 25, of Kenya, who took third place.
Meanwhile, Mary Keitany of Kenya won the women’s race for the fourth time, reclaiming her prize after finishing second in 2017.
Keitany, 36, finished the race in 2 hours, 22 minutes and 48 seconds, averaging 5 minutes and 27 seconds per mile.
Vivian Cheruiyot of Kenya took second place, while Shalene Flanagan of the United States came in third.
Flanagan, who won last year, said after the race that she couldn’t have asked for a better marathon day.
“Just celebrating all the amazing women,” she said. “I felt like I had to come back. I’m just so appreciative of being here today. I felt so much love on the course.”
Thousands of runners packed the race, which started on the Verrezzano Bridge in Staten Island and ends in Central Park near West 66th Street.
The race route covers all five boroughs of the city, with the majority of the race being run through Brooklyn and Queens.
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