Photo courtesy of Martineric
Marilson Gomes dos Santos crossed the line first in this years New York Marathon in a wind affected time of 2:08:43. He ran down Moroccan Abderrahim Goumri in the final kilometer to take the men’s race in a dramatic fashion in the closing stages of the race. Goumri finished in a time of 2:09:05 ahead of Daniel Rono (2:11:22) and the aging Paul Tergat who could only manage 4th on this occasion coming home in 2:13:10.
“I never lost hope,” Dos Santos said.
“When I got into Central Park, the people got me going and inspired me to win the race.”
Paula Radcliffe, made up for a poor Olympic and now seems back to her best with a strong finish to take out the women’s title in 2:23:56. In doing so, she became the second woman to win the New York City Marathon three times. She crossed the line 1 minute, 47 seconds ahead of Russian Ludmila Petrova, with debutant American Kara Goucher only another 10 seconds behind.
In arguably the strongest field ever assembled for a women’s marathon, Paula went to the front after about 10 meters and stayed there. While the early pace was not earth shattering due to strong winds, the pace got progressively faster. Contenders were Gete Wami – looking to finish in the top 2 to claim the World Majors title, American athlete Kara Goucher making her marathon debut, Dire Tune of Ethiopia and Ludmilla Petrova of Russia.
Just after 30km, the relentless pace of the 5km interval between 25km and 30km (covered in 16:36) began to do some damage. First, Goucher fell off the pack, followed by Wami, who waved goodbye to $500,000 and her World Majors hopes. Dire Tune held on until about 32km until she was also dropped, leaving only Ludmilla Petrova of Russia and Radcliffe. Goucher held strong and having been dropped, was fighting to stay in touch. She’d moved ahead of Wami and Tune into third.
At 34km Radcliffe pulled clear, opening up a 10m gap, Petrova‘s challenge was over and the race belonged to Paula. Behind her, Goucher who will surely be a name to look out for in the future, fought strongly to record a great debut performance of 2:25:53 to finish third. She was in sight of Petrova for second, but could not bridge the gap. The 40-year old Russian set a new veteran world record of 2:25:42.
Contenders in the men’s race were former world record holder Paul Tergat and Daniel Rono – both of Kenyan, 2006 winner Marilson Gomes dos Santos of Brazil and 2007 2nd place getter, Moroccan Abderrahim Goumri.
The men’s race also started slow with halfway reached in 1:06:06 and all the main contenders was still present. Then it got interesting with a progressive pace increase, the 5k between 25 and 30km covered in an incredibly fast – 14:24 (2:53/km), driven by attack and counter-attack, primarily by Goumri, Rono, Kirui and Gomes dos Santos. Paul Tergat, at 39, the elder statesman of the race, shadowed the moves.
The intensity of the surging soon told on the two Kenyans, Rono and Tergat and at 35km the race was split wide open. Only Goumri and dos Santos remained. Goumri, surged just before 35km to open up a nine second lead which he held for the next 5 or so kilometers, until eventually, in Central Park, he faltered and continued a run of second-place finishes. Dos Santos though, ran a brilliant race to record his second New York title and confirms himsef as a major marathon name. Tergat came in fourth, behind Daniel Rono.
About 39,000 people participated in the 39th running of the race, covering a 26.2-mile (42.2-kilometer) course that touched all five of New York City’s boroughs and ended in Manhattan’s Central Park.
For a more detailed (and scientific) analysis of the race, the Science of Sport website has thorough race reports of both the men’s and women’s New York Marathon.