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The 2014 Boston Marathon winner was initially Kenyan Rita Jeptoo. She was later banned for doping. However, she made off with prize money in the amount of $75,000 for the win and $25,000 for breaking the course record. Jeptoo also won Boston in 2006 and 2013. In 2013 she also won Chicago in a personal best time of 2:19:57, pre-super shoe era. Jeptoo finished nine Marathon Majors events in the top six, including second in Chicago in 2012, and third in Boston in 2008 among others. All told, she likely collected at least a million US dollars.

Ethiopian Buzunesh Deba was moved up from second to first place, once Jeptoo was banned. However, she never received the prize money for first, only second.

Jeptoo’s go-to lie

Jeptoo was stripped of her Marathon Majors titles as well as her New York and Boston wins. The $500,000 she won from the Majors’ two-year competition was held back.

Both of her A and B results tested positive for EPO. At first, she denied wrong-doing and blamed a doctor for treating her for malaria; a go-to, red-flag excuse commonly used by East Africans.

At that time in 2015, World Athletics (previously, International Association of Athletics Federations) suspended nine more athletes, eight from Kenya and one from India for six months to eight years, they were: Julius Kiprono Mutai, Elizabeth Chelagat, Flomena Jebet Chepchirchir, Philip Kandie, Emily Perpetua Chepkorir, Stephen Kibet Tanui, Alice Ndirangu, James Maunga Nyankabaria and India’s Sethi Kethi for eight years.

Currently, the B.A.A. Boston Marathon organizers continue to try to get the money back from the now 43-year-old runner. It is highly unlikely the money will ever be returned. The prize money she collected boils down to theft. Who did she steal from? Deba. Deba has since been credited with the win. She has waited patiently for the money — it wasn’t coming, at least not from Jeptoo.

Generous samaritan

However, a fan of the Boston Marathon Doug Guyer, a businessman in Boston found out about Deba’s story and sent her a cheque for the $75,000. She has no idea who Guyer is.

In a statement, the B.A.A. said, “The Boston Athletic Association stands for clean sport and fair competition. Following the ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the B.A.A. began the pursuit of reclaiming prize money awards from Jeptoo.

“As the matter is still ongoing, we are unable to comment further at this time. We are in the process of attempting to recover the prize money awarded to Ms Jeptoo so that it can be repaid to Ms Deba.

“While we believe that Ms Deba is due the prize money as she is the rightful winner of the 2014 women’s race, there are policies held by World Athletics and supported by World Marathon Majors that we, along with the other members of the organization, follow.

“The B.A.A is still pursuing Ms Jeptoo to recover the prize money for Ms Deba, which the B.A.A. believes would be a just and fair result for her and all runners who follow the rules. As this matter is still ongoing, we are not able to comment further at this time.”

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