McFadden keeps marathon slam in her sights

McFadden keeps marathon slam in her sights

CHICAGO — Just a few years ago, Dennis Kimetto was a farmer, tending corn and cattle in Kenya. Now, he’s shattering marathon records.

Six weeks removed from a bout of malaria, Kimetto broke the course mark Sunday in capturing the Chicago Marathon. Compatriot Rita Jeptoo was the women’s winner in the first major marathon in the United States since the Boston bombings.

Kimetto finished in 2 hours, 3 minutes, 45 seconds, leading a 1-2-3 finish for Kenyan men. He beat the mark of 2:04:38 set by Ethiopia’s Tsegaye Kebede last year. He pulled away from Emannuel Mutai over the last few miles and was alone with both arms raised as he crossed the line.

Before the race, there was a 30-second moment of silence to honor the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings.

Mutai (2:03:52), the 2011 London winner, also beat Kebede’s time but finished seven seconds off the lead. Sammy Kitwara (2:05:16) was third.

Jeptoo followed her victory at Boston by easily taking her race, finishing in 2:19:57 after losing in a sprint a year ago. There was no one near Jeptoo as she turned into Grant Park, wearing a wide grin and waving to the crowd.

Jemima Sumgong Jelegat of Kenya (2:20:48) was second, followed by Maria Konovalova of Russia (2:22:46).

The winners each earned $100,000. Kimetto gets an additional $75,000 for the course record, while Jeptoo gets another $40,000 for finishing under 2:20:00.

On a sunny day and with conditions ideal, the race drew a Chicago Marathon-record 40,230 runners. But there was a different feel to this event in the aftermath of Boston, where the bombings killed three people and injured more than 260 others.

“It’s a testimony to what the marathon is about and what the people who participate in the marathon are about,” executive race director Carey Pinkowski said. “They’re dedicated and focused and committed. The marathon’s a celebration of humanity. This is an example of that.”

Ernst Van Dyk of South Africa won the men’s wheelchair division race in 1:30:37.

University of Illinois' Tatyana McFadden won the women’s division in a course-record 1:42:35.

McFadden, who also won the Boston and London marathons this year, will attempt a Grand Slam in wheelchair racing at the New York City Marathon next month.

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