Scott Fauble and Jared Ward both broke the two hour, ten minute barrier at the 123rd Boston Marathon today, the first Americans to accomplish that feat in a marathon ,other than Galen Rupp, in the last 5 years.
Fauble and Ward also both earned the 2020 Olympic standard by virtue of their top 10 finishes Monday. Fauble ran 2:09:09, a personal best, to finish in 7th place. Ward clocked 2:09:25, his best ever time, to finish just behind in 8th place.
Last year (2018) 160 men ran under 2:10 for the marathon. Only one of those men was an American. Galen Rupp. It had been 5 years since any U.S. runner other than Rupp had broken the barrier and signaled a resurgence in U.S. distance running.
Fauble runs for the HOKA NAZ Elite team in Arizona. Ward is a statistics professor at BYU in Utah and the father of four children.
Lawrence Cherono of Kenya outkicked Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopia in the final few strides to win the overall race in a time of 2:07:57.
Marathoning doesn't get any better than this, as the 26.2 mile race came down to a 100 meter sprint. TWO SECONDS separated the top two runners. This was the closest finish to the Boston Marathon in the last 30 years!!
In the women's race, Worknesh Degefa outclassed the field with a winning time of 2:23:29. She ran the last 20 miles alone in first place. Former Oregon Duck Jordan Hassay was third in a time of 2:25.20
Joan Samuelson, celebrating the 40th anniversary of her 1979 Boston victory (as Joan Benoit) clocked an outstanding 3:05.18. Perhaps the best age-graded performance of the spectacular day.