The men’s field hit the half way in 1:06:06, and the pack was huge for men. Who will win? How fast will the men have to run to medal? Obviously, there will either be a very close finish or a very long run for home…..
The wind, again, has been one of the key players today. Abel Kirui of Kenya hit the halfway in 1:06:06, a 5:02 mile pace. Abderrahime Bouramdane of Morocco, Isaac Macharia, Mohammed Awol , Abderrahim Goumri, Abdi Abdirahman of USA, Boaz
Cheboiywo of Kenya with Daniel Rono and Paul Tergat in this front group.
The level of elite marathon competition is very tough. So much at this level requires a great deal of luck. Staying out of trouble, staying hydrated, and finding a place to make one’s move is key to success here.
Goumri took the pack through the 25k in 1:17.27, with Tergat, Kirui and Marilson dos Santos of Brazil there as the pace increased to just under five minutes per mile. Falling off the back was Abdi Adirhaman of the US, who was eight seconds back at twenty-five kilometers.
The race started to really broke open at this time. Marilson Gomes dos Santos of Brazil took the lead at thirty kilometers, which was hit in 1:32:12. This was the fastest part of the race so far, a 4:56 pace. Paul Tergat, the former world record holder and like dos Santos, former winners here, was looking very good at this point. I was also looking at Abderrahim Goumri and Kirui.
Goumri and Dos Santos, by nineteen, showed that the race was down to these two magnificent runners. Nineteen miles was hit in 1;33.50, with Goumri, Dos Santos, Daniel Rono and Paul Tergat in tow. Twenty miles was hit in 1:38:37 with Goumri just ahead of Dos Santos.
At twenty-one miles, Goumri lead Dos Santos in 1:43:19. The battle was telling, as Daniel Rono dropped back twenty three seconds and Paul Tergat dropped back 32 seconds. At twenty two miles, with Goumri and Dos Santos together, Rono was 37 seconds back and Tergat had fallen off the back to 1:01 behind the leaders.
Who would win? Goumri had not won here before, and while Dos Santos had a win here, he was looking like it was a long day at the office. At twenty-three miles, Goumri pushed the pedal down, hitting 1:52:48, twenty-four in 1:57:19 and twenty-five miles in 2:02:43. By this time, Goumri had seven seconds on Dos Santos and it seemed that perhaps Goumri had the win.
In the next pack, Josh Rohatinsky, Jason Lemkuhle and Abdi Abdirhaman were moving up from tenth, ninth and eighth, and taking some of the top athletes as they charged over the last two miles. California’s Bolata Asmeron, in his first marathon, was moving quickly through the second pack as well!
Abderrahim Goumri did not have much time to relish his lead. Marilson Gomes Dos Santos called something from within, and just before twenty-six miles, charged back into the lead…and there was a break. By twenty-six miles, Marilson Gomes Dos Santos of Brazil has eighteen seconds between himself and Morocco’s Goumri. Goumri just could not lift his legs and Dos Santos looked like a miler. This was the break that Dos Santos needed.
Great athletes, one training in Morocco and one training in Brazil, dueled for over seven miles to determine the king of the ING New York City marathon for a day. Marilson Gomes Dos Santos was considered a flash in the pan when he won his first race here. This time, Dos Santos was on the short list. Abderraham Goumri of Morocco, who has never won a marathon, will have to wait until another day to change that statistic.
Over the last two minutes, Dos Santos ran strong and his winning margin stretched to twenty-four seconds. Goumri held on for second place, and Daniel Rono of Kenya was third. Paul Tergat stayed in fourth.
Abdi Abdirhaman of US was sixth in 2:14:17. Josh Rohatinsky was seventh in 2:14:23. Jason Lemkuhle was eighth in 2:14:30-three US runners in a row. In tenth place, Bolata Asmeron ran 2:16:37 for his debut marathon.
Top 10 Leaders
Place Bib# Runner Country / State Time Differential Pace / Mile
1 4 Gomes Dos Santos, Marilson BRA 2:08:43 +0:00 4:54
2 2 Goumri, Abderrahim MAR 2:09:07 +0:24 4:55
3 7 Rono, Daniel KEN 2:11:22 +2:39 5:00
4 5 Tergat, Paul KEN 2:13:10 +4:27 5:04
5 12 Bouramdane, Abderrahime MAR 2:13:33 +4:50 5:05
6 6 Abdirahman, Abdi USA / AZ 2:14:17 +5:34 5:07
7 16 Rohatinsky, Josh USA / OR 2:14:23 +5:40 5:07
8 14 Lehmkuhle, Jason USA / MN 2:14:30 +5:47 5:07
9 10 Rotich, Hosea KEN 2:15:25 +6:42 5:09
10 18 Asmerom, Bolota USA / CA 2:16:37 +7:54 5:12
38, 833 runners started the 39th ING New York City marathon. On a cool, windy day, many different stories, many different heroic moments, many life memories. Two winners today, Paula Radcliffe and Marilson Gomes Dos Santos, lead the fields to a wonderful day on the course, a chance to challenge oneself, and a chance to see what one is made of-a life moment.
Somewhere out on the course, several of Ryan Shay’s former teammates were thinking of him, perhaps smiling through the pain, celebrating his life one year after his fall…a time for everything.
Part of the handing out of wreaths to Olympic champions in Ancient Greece is apocryphal, but if it did not happen, it should have. Some stories suggest that as the ancient Olympians were crowed with their crowns of olive leaves, someone whispered into their ears, victory is fleeting…those life moments, such as finishing a treasured race, can be treasured.
For Paula Radcliffe, this was an important race. If she had not won, one wonders how much longer she would be around. Racing at her level has been a challenge, and obviously, her 2:15:35 is Beamonesque. For me, the way Paula won this race, from the gun, showed not only her native ability, but the frighteningly awesome sense of determination Paula Radcliffe possesses.
For Marilson Gomes Dos Santos, to come back at the end of a race, when the muscles are screaming, and the spirit is waning is remarkable. Dos Santos now joins the few men who have come back and won here more than one time. Brazil will be proud.
And in Kara Goucher, we have a new star! Goucher ran a superb race for her first taste of the marathon. Kara told the media afterwards that she had some stomach distress, but she came back, charging from sixth to third over the last several miles, ten seconds off second place. The fastest debut by an American women ever, the fastest time by an American women on the ING NYCM course and the best American women’s finish since 1994!
It is 1:40 pm here in New York. I am heading back to my hotel, then out for a nice long walk. I thank you all for following the race on the Running Network.com site and the runblogrun.com.
Some deep thoughts will follow tonight!
Runblogrun.com encourages you to check out the sites of Shooting Star Media, Inc.: American Track & Field (www.american-trackandfield.com), Athletes Only (www.atf-athlete.com), California Track & Running News (www.caltrack.com), MIssouri Runner & Triathlete (www.morunandtri.com), Latinos Corriendo(www.latinoscorriendo.com), Coaching
Athletics Quarterly (www.coachingathleticsq.com), and USATF Fast Forward (www.usatf.org). All of the above magazine websites can be found at RunningNetwork.com (www.runningnetwork.com).