Meb Keflezighi announced on Friday that he was dropping out of the 2013 Boston Marathon, taking with him America's best chance for a win in 117th running of the world-famous race.
Keflezighi cited "a nagging injury to [his] calf [that] has not healed sufficiently" as his reason for withdrawing.
"I'm very disappointed," Kelfezighi said in a statement released by John Hancock. "My training was going well in January and February, which had me very excited about the possibilities this spring. I even skipped the New York City half marathon [March 17] to focus on getting healthy for Boston but unfortunately it wasn't enough. I ran out of time to recover enough to compete for a victory."
Keflezighi pulled out of the NYC Half just a week before that race because of the same calf injury. His withdrawal comes just about month after fellow American Ryan Hall did the same because of a quad strain.
The U.S. male favorite will now likely be Abdi Abdirahman (the third member of Team USA's marathon team in London 2012). No American has won the Boston Marathon since 1983.
The small bit of silver lining in this is that Meb, 38, says he may push back his retirement as a result. "I think I will go on in 2014," he said on Friday night. " Keflezighi is still planning on running New York in November this year.
"I'm pretty pissed off," Keflezighi said about the outside influences that ruined both buildups. "Just because I'm very thorough. My whole point was to get to the start line healthy. If it was my doing - if I did something drastic or tried to rush it or did something stupid - I'd be, ‘Oh, man.' But it's not my own doing. It's misfortune. "