If anyone took a break from watching football this past weekend, they got to see something we don’t see too often of anymore, an American winning a distance race.
The ING New York Marathon took place last Sunday, taking runners literally all over the city of New York. Starting in Staten Island, then hitting Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Manhattan. One of the more popular marathons around, runners are treated to a tour of the inner workings of one of America’s biggest cities.
When this race started back in 1970, American men dominated the winner’s circle. For the first 13 years of the New York Marathon, an American runner came out on top. Since then, a steady dose of runners from Italy, Mexico, Kenya, Brasil, and others countries taking home the marathon title year after year. Finally, for the first time since 1982, an American runner won the New York Marathon.
Meb Keflezighi, 34, hailing from California broke the drought this year finishing the 26.2 mile run with a time of 2:09:15. While it may seem like this is getting more attention than maybe the average person would think. This is why it is a big deal. Like many of the sports out there, certain countries tend to dominate, running is no exception. Years ago, for some of the bigger races around the country, mostly marathons, started bringing in runners from other countries to help out the races credibility. With this, and offering prize money, the presence of Elite Runners is more of a common sight now. If you’ve been to a major race in the last couple years, surely you’ve seen some of these guys. They are without question some of the best athletes in the world, and that’s why this story is getting its due attention. While the USA has many amazing runners, it’s hard to overcome some of the other nations powerhouse runners. So for Meb Keflezighi, finishing just ahead of Kenya’s Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot, it’s a sweet win for Meb, and his country.