BOSTON - Deena Kastor (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.) captured her second USA Marathon title, running 2:35:09 to finish fifth overall Monday at the 111th running of the B.A.A. Boston Marathon.
A pre-race favorite for the open Boston title, Kastor battled with stomach cramps as she ran with the lead women for nearly 14 miles. Despite Kastor being delayed for more than a minute in order to deal with her stomach issues and struggling to continue her race, the chase pack of U.S. women was only able to close within 1:15 of Kastor before she carried on to win her third U.S. title of 2007. Earlier this year she won the national cross country and 15 km championships.
Mary Akor (Gardena, Calif.) seemed to be in prime position to capture the runner-up spot in the championship for the second year in a row as she led a pursing pack that included Christine Lundy (Sausalito, Calif.), Ann Alyanak (Bellbrook, Ohio) and Kristin Price (Raleigh, N.C.).
At 25 km Akor and Lundy had separated themselves from the chase pack, working with a cushion of 51 seconds, but the cold, windy conditions proved to be too much for both as Alyanak and Price overtook them at 30 km to go on to finish second and third in 2:38:55 and 2:38:57 respectively. Akor held on for fourth in 2:41:01, while Lundy took fifth in 2:41:14. For complete results, visit www.bostonmarathon.org
Based on their finishes, Kastor and Alyanak both qualify for selection to the U.S. marathon team for the 2007 IAAF World Championships Marathon in Osaka. The team for the August championships will be finalized on April 30.
Boston played host to the 2007 USA Women's Marathon Championship as a kick-off to the year-long build-up to the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Women's Marathon, which will be held in Boston on Sunday, April 20, the day before the 112th Boston Marathon.
USA Running Circuit
The 2007 USA Women's Marathon Championship was the third event for women on the 2007 edition of USA Track & Field's 2006 USA Running Circuit (USARC). Kastor now leads the circuit with 45 points, Alyanak is in second with 26 and Elva Dryer is in third with 25.
The USARC, a USA Track & Field road series, features USA Championships from 5 km to the marathon and attracts the best U.S. distance runners. The thirteenth edition for the men and twelfth for the women, the 2007 USARC has nine events for men and seven events for women.
The first ten U.S. runners earn points at each USARC race (15 for first, 12 for second, 10 for third, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and 1), with a final $12,500 grand prix purse ($6000, $4000, and $2500) for the top three men and women point scorers overall. The USARC points at the USA Marathon Championships will be doubled.
The mission of the USA Running Circuit is to showcase, support, and promote U.S. runners. Since its inception in 1995, the USARC and its races have provided over $4 million dollars to U.S. distance runners.
For more information on the 2007 USA Women's Marathon Championship and the 2007 USARC, visit www.usatf.org.