Kenyans Benson Kipruto and Diana Kipyogei sweep Boston Marathon

Victories in 2021 men's and women's races are the first major city marathon wins for Kipruto and 27-year-old Kipyogei.

By Evelyn Watta
Picture by 2021 Getty Images

Kenya’s Benson Kipruto destroyed the field to win the men’s Boston Marathon on Monday, October 11, while his compatriot Diana Kipyogei won the women’s.

Kipruto injected pace to break the men’s group after the 35km mark and maintained the gap until the finish, charging to the line with a huge 56 second lead for the biggest win of his athletics career.

He timed two hours, 9 minutes and 51 seconds, ahead of Ethiopia’s Lemi Berhanu.

Kipyogei, running in only her third marathon, broke loose at the 30km, and managed to hold off a charging Netsanet Gudeta of Ethiopia for her first major win in two hours, 24 minutes and 45 seconds.

42-year-old Edna Kiplagat also of Kenya impressed in second place in 2:25.09.

Kipruto comes from behind to win

American CJ Albertson made an early breakaway and had led the men's field at halfway by nearly two minutes 13 seconds.

But the chasing pack of around 15 runners closed the gap and passed him at the 32km point.

Kipruto injected pace, breaking the men’s group as he peeled away after 35km, and maintained the gap until the finish.

The 30-year-old, seventh in London last year, confidently pounded the final kilometres of the most hilly and challenging of the world's top marathon's, for his best performance yet.

The Kenyan had previously won the Prague marathon in May 2021.

It was an East African dominated run yet again as Berhanu, the 2016 Boston marathon champion led a string of Ethiopians who occupied the next five positions. Berhanu clocked 2:10:37 ahead of third placed Jemal Yimer 2:10:38

The top American finisher was Collin Bennie in seventh, with a time of 02:11:26 as Albertson came in 10th in 02:11:44.

Picture by 2021 Getty Images

Kipyogei leads Kenyan surge

It was a brilliant day of marathon racing in the streets of Boston for Kenyans in the women's event, with Kipyogei making the decisive move that broke a lead pack that had stuck together up to the 30km mark.

Her early kick paid off, as she managed to brush off a strong charge from Gudeta with about seven kilometres of running remaining.

The 27-year-old Kenyan surged ahead to finish a comfortable 24 seconds of second placed Kiplagat, who was aiming for her second Boston title after winning in 2017.

Kiplagat strongly crossed the line in 2:25:09 ahead of compatriots Mary Ngugi (2:25.20) in third, and Monicah Ngige in fourth (2:25:32).

The best placed American in the women was Nell Rojas in sixth position in 2:27:12.

Picture by 2021 Getty Images