|The 2001 Boston Marathon - Overview
by John Elliott
It was a beautiful day in Massachusetts for the 105th running of the Boston Marathon: temperatures in the low 50s, little wind, and clear/slightly overcast skies. Fifteen thousand six hundred and six runners left Hopkinton, Massachusetts on a 26.2 mile journey to Boston. At the end, the story was about the continued dominance of the Kenyan runners in the women's marathon, but the failure of the Kenyan runners to win the men's race after ten consecutive victories.
In the men's race, Bong-Ju Lee of Korea was victorious in a time of 2:09:43. Lee, the silver-medalist in the 1996 Olympics was the first Korean to win Boston since 1950 when Koreans swept the top three places. Silvio Guerra of Ecuador was second in a time of 2:10:07, following up on a second place finish at Boston in 1999. Joshua Chelang'a of Kenya beat his countrymen in his first ever marathon, completing the Boston course in 2:10:29. Rod DeHaven was the first American, setting a PR to finish sixth in a time of 2:12:41. The surprise in the race, however, was the failure of the Kenyan favorites, last year's winner Elijah Legat and last year's runnerup Moses Tanui to finish in the top 10.
On the women's side, Catherine Ndereba of Kenya successfully defended her crown, dominating the women's race to finish in 2:23:53, nearly 2-1/2 minutes faster than her winning time of last year. Malgorzata Sobanska of Poland set a PR to claim second place in 2:26:42, nearly three minutes behind Ndereba. Lyubov Morgunova of Russia finished third in a time of 2:27:18.
In the wheelchair races, Ernst Van Dyk of South Africa ended the Swiss dominance in Boston by winning the race in a convincing 1:25:12, more than six minutes ahead of five-time champion Franz Nietlispach (1995,1997-2000). Louise Sauvage of Australia won the women's wheelchair division in a time of 1:53:54, taking back the title she lost to Jean Driscoll last year (Driscoll did not compete in this year's race). Edith Hunkeler of Switzerland took second place, finishing four seconds back, having worked together with Sauvage for most of the race.