Powerful Surge Gives Hayle Boston Title
By James O'Brien
Near perfect conditions greeted the 27,491 runners who lined up in Hopkinton for the 120th running of the Boston Marathon: temperatures in the low '60s; no humidity; a gentle, cooling breeze. Ethiopia’s Lemi Berhanu Hayle took supreme advantage of the crystal clear day, running away from defending champion Lelisa Desisa in grand style before breaking the tape in 2:12:45.
Meandering through the early miles, the large pack was full of the world’s best. Joining Hayle and Desisa were 2012 champion Wesley Korir of Kenya and last year’s runner-up Yemane Adhane Tsegay of Ethiopia, among others. There was more than enough firepower to burn up the roads out of Hopkinton.
Japan's Shingo Igarashi led through the opening miles on a pace faster than his 2:13:14 personal best. But even that, for the field of thoroughbreds, was barely enough to warrant them taking off their sweats. It did, however, set the stage for an intriguing competition.
By four miles (20:07), Igarashi still held his pole position. But by five miles (25:19), his day was done. The cumbersome lead pack swallowed him whole and, though he hung on for the next mile or so, he ultimately faded to 19th in 2:26:24. From this point onward, it was all about the power of East Africa, especially Hayle and Desisa.