Boston Marathon: Obiri reveals secret after top, history-making performance

Tuesday, April 16th, 2024 11:34 | By
Hellen Obiri at the Doha World Championship. PHOTO/(@hellen_obiri)/Hellen Obiri/Twitter.
Hellen Obiri at the Doha World Championship. PHOTO/(@hellen_obiri)/Hellen Obiri/X.

Kenya's long-distance runner Hellen Obiri has revealed the secret behind her performance at the Boston Marathon on Monday, April 15, 2024.

The Kenya Defense Forces officer retained her title, thereby notching up her third victory in a row in a World Marathon Majors race and leading a Kenyan sweep of the podium. She also became the sixth woman to make it back-to-back titles in Boston.

A perfect training programme is what Obiri believes propelled her to glory in Boston, the superstar has revealed.

“When I won here last year, I was not that familiar with the marathon. This year, my training was perfect, and I trusted everything we were doing.

“Winning is something very precious to me. After winning here, I really hope I’ll be chosen to compete at the Olympics," she told World Athletics.

Obiri also spoke about her compatriot, Sharon Lokedi, who finished second after a tight race.

“I knew that Sharon was very strong, so I tried my best at the end. I tried to push, but she was still close behind me. To win here makes me so very happy," she added.

Kenya's long-distance runner Hellen Obiri holds the trophy after winning the Boston Marathon. PHOTO/(@WilliamsRuto)/X

How Obiri saw off rivals

Meanwhile, Obiri led a pack of about 20 women who ran together for most of the first half, went through 10km in 33:27, and reached the halfway point in 1:12:33.

Just before 30km, USA’s Emma Bates attempted to make a break, but her time running a few strides ahead of the pack was short-lived, and by 21 miles she had fallen behind the lead group.

By 35km which the athletes reached in 2:00:48, the pack was down to 12 women, with Obiri poised ominously near the front. About six minutes later, Obiri, Lokedi, and Edna Kiplagat broke away to form a lead trio.

After another four minutes of running, two-time Boston winner Kiplagat had been dropped, leaving Obiri and Lokedi out in front.

Soon after passing through 40km together in 2:15:54, Obiri broke away from Lokedi to begin her long drive from home. 

Obiri, displaying the same finishing strength that has carried the 34-year-old to many major victories and medals, charged through the line in 2:22:37, earning her third marathon victory in what was just her fourth career race over the distance.

Lokedi, also a relatively inexperienced marathon runner, claimed second place in 2:22:45, while Kiplagat completed the Kenyan podium sweep in 2:23:21.

Women's results
1 Hellen Obiri (KEN) 2:22:37
2 Sharon Lokedi (KEN) 2:22:45
3 Edna Kiplagat (KEN) 2:23:21
4 Buze Diriba (ETH) 2:24:04
5 Senbere Teferi (ETH) 2:24:04
6 Mary Ngugi-Cooper (KEN) 2:24:24
7 Workenesh Edesa (ETH) 2:24:47
8 Fatima Gardadi (MAR) 2:24:53
9 Tiruye Mesfin (ETH) 2:24:58
10 Dera Dida (ETH) 2:25:16

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