Posted by: Joe English | April 21, 2008

Races: Cheruiyot wins fourth Boston Marathon; Tune wins tightest women’s race in Boston History

Cheruiyot wins 2008 Boston MarathonBOSTON — Robert Cheruiyot won the 112th Boston Marathon today in a time of 2:07:46, earning him his fourth Boston Marathon victory and third in a row. Dire Tune outkicked Alevtina Biktimirova after a back-and-forth last mile to win by 2 seconds in the closest finish in the history of the women’s race.

Cheruiyot pulled away from Morroco’s Abderrahime Bouramdane as they entered the Newton Hills, reaching the crest of Heartbreak Hill with a 27-second lead and coasting to the sixth-fastest time in Boston Marathon history.

“This was the hardest,” Cheruiyot told the Associated Press. “Boston is not a very easy course, it’s very difficult. (But) I enjoy running the hills.”

Cheruiyot owns the course record of 2:07:14 which he set two years ago. Although his course record remained intact, he still beat his winning time of 2:14:13 in last year’s horrid weather conditions.

He was essentially unchallenged in this year’s race, prompting him to comment: “It’s very difficult when you’re running alone here in Boston,” he said. “You need company.”

Tune, who finished in 2:25:25, was the first Ethiopian woman to win since Fatuma Roba won three straight from 1997-99. She ran side-by-side with Biktimirova into Kenmore Square, and appeared to give up an edge when she nearly missed one of the final turns.

Tune quickly composed herself and took the lead before the last turn, but Biktimirova caught her and regained the lead briefly. Tune pulled ahead for the good on Boylston Street in the last few city blocks and beat the Russian to the line.

“I was fighting until the end,” Biktimirova said. “And in the end I just didn’t have enough speed.”

The previous closest women’s finish came two years ago, when Rita Jeptoo beat Jelena Prokopcuka by 10 seconds. Jeptoo finished third this year, 69 second behind Tune.

Bouramdane finished 1:18 behind Cheruiyot and Moroccan Khalid El Boumlili came in third, another 1:31 back. Nicholas Arciniaga, of Rochester Hills, Mich., was the top American finisher in 10th position.

Cheruiyot pulled away from a pack of four at the base of the Newton Hills, running the 19th mile in 4:37. He passed defending women’s champion Lidiya Grigoryeva, with the two No. 1 bibs running side-by-side, just before the 24-mile mark.

Lance Armstrong finished the race in 2:50:58, besting his own predicition of “about three hours” which he made at a public appearance here Saturday.

Elite Results for the 2008 Boston Marathon
Men’s Champions

1. Robert K Cheruiyot KEN 2:07:46
2. Abderrahime Bouramdane MAR 2:09:04
3. Khalid El Boumlili MAR 2:10:35
4. Gashaw Asfaw ETH 2:10:47
5. Kasime Adillo ETH 2:12:24

Women’s Champions
1. Dire Tune ETH 2:25:25
2. Alevtina Biktimirova RUS 2:25:27
3. Rita Jeptoo KEN 2:26:34
4. Jelena Prokopcuka LAT 2:28:12
5. Askale Tafa Magarsa ETH 2:29:48

Running Advice and News
http://www.running-advice.com

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Responses

  1. Great coverage of Boston, coach!


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