Having won the Los Angeles Marathon in both 2009 and 2010, and finishing second at last year's Chicago Marathon, the running resume of Wesley Korir was already impressive even before Monday's Boston Marathon. But now it is complete after the 29-year-old's victory in the 116th running of the race, his Boston debut.
Korir pulled away from Levy Matebo during the final mile and held on to win in 2:12:40, a slower time than usual at Boston. But then, Boston isn't usually experiencing 80-degree days on Marathon Monday, which is why Korir slowed to make sure he got water at the 40k mark.
"I knew it was going to be hot. One important thing today was fluids. I guess my biology degree kicked in a bit today (laughs). I was more concerned with my hydration, than my position...When the underpass came up, I knew I had to start kicking."
So what was his race strategy? Afterward, he explained that around mile 20, someone shouted to him that he was in sixth place, so he then just became focused on moving up fifth.
"I saw the guys in front of me and I thought, 'Let me get fifth.' Then I passed the guy in fourth and I thought wow, 'I could get fourth.' When I saw the guy in front of him, I thought, 'Wow, I could get on the podium.'"
And then, when he caught the leaders on the flatter part of the course, near the finish, Korir explained, "At that moment, it's survival of the fittest. I tried to take one step at a time. I was confident that if it came down to the wire, I would have an advantage, because my speed was good."
Quotes via the Boston Marathon Facebook page.