In Sunday’s (6 November) New York City Marathon, Amanda McGrory of the USA set a new course record on the way to her second event title and Masazumi Soejima became the first Japanese winner in any division of the Marathon after taking the men’s wheelchair competition.
McGrory finished the 26.2-mile course in a time of 1:50.24, bettering the previous mark of 1:52.38 that Swiss racer Edith Hunkeler set in 2007. The American had already won both the Paris and London Marathons this year and is a four-time Paralympic Games medallist.
In a battle for second place on the women’s side, Great Britain’s Shelly Woods edged out the USA’s Tatyana McFadden by just a mere two seconds with a time of 1:52.50.
Soejima, 41, finished the course in 1:31.41 to win the men’s event for the first time after already winning the Boston Marathon this year. Soejima was racing for the children of Japan following the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit his country. He had promised the children of Oita he would win the event.
Australia’s Kurt Fearnley, who won this year’s Chicago Marathon and was favoured to win the New York event, encountered mechanical problems during the race, as his steering mechanism snapped halfway through the course. He still managed to finish second with a time of 1:33.56.
Soejima’s teammate, Kota Hokinoue, finished third on the men’s side in 1:34.21. He was followed by Switzerland’s Heinz Frei (1:37.21) and Marcel Hug (1:38.42).