NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Shalane Flanagan dethroned Mary Keitany on Sunday and became the first American woman to win the New York City Marathon since 1977, potentially ending her decorated career with her first major marathon victory.
Geoffrey Kamworor of Kenya won the men’s race, holding off countryman Wilson Kipsang by 3 seconds for his first major victory.
Keitany had won three straight New York marathons, but Flanagan pulled away from the Kenyan great with about three miles to go. Flanagan finished in 2 hours, 26 minutes, 53 second, about a minute faster than Keitany. The American cried and yelled as she approached the finish line all alone.
The last American woman to win New York was Miki Gorman, who won consecutive titles in 1976-77.
Flanagan finished second in New York for her first marathon in 2010 but hadn’t run this race since. After a fracture in her lower back kept her out of the Boston Marathon in the spring, Flanagan trained hard for New York with an eye on Keitany.
Kamworor ran the race in 2:10:53. He and Kipsang embraced just past the finish line to huge cheers.
American running great and 2009 New York winner Meb Keflezighi completed his 26th and final marathon, collapsing as he crossed the finish.
Keflezighi won the silver medal in the 2004 Athens Olympics and has also previously won the Boston Marathon, the New York Times recalled.
Keflezighi blew kisses to the crowd, smiled and pumped fists in the air before collapsing, WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond reported. This was his 11th New York City marathon and his 26th race.
He first ran the New York City Marathon in 2002.
In the race, more than 50,000 runners from across the globe pushed themselves to the limit to traverse each of the five boroughs over a whopping 26 miles and change.
The day was dedicated to spirit and pride, and was marked by an unprecedented police presence to protect both the runners and the expected two and a half million spectators cheering them on along the city-spanning route.
The enhanced security was in response to the truck attack in Lower Manhattan on Halloween, where eight people were killed when accused terrorist Sayfullo Saipov sped down the popular bike path near the West Side Highway, mowing down innocent cyclists and pedestrians.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)