© Copyright – 2023 – Athletics Illustrated

The New York City Marathon ran Sunday amid great anticipation around the women’s field. Billed as potentially the greatest women’s field of all time, there was double world champion Hellen Obiri, half marathon world record holder Letesenbet Gidey, and former marathon world record holder Brigid Kosgei. Also in the field was defending New York champion Sharon Lokedi of Kenya. Meanwhile, in the men’s field, Canada’s Cameron Levins was drawing attention as it was expected that he could potentially podium in Gotham — some were talking win. Levins is the North American record holder with his Tokyo run in March of 2:05:36.

Men’s race

It would be Ethiopian Tamirat Tola who would go on the win the men’s race. In the process, he broke the course record, finishing in 2:04:58. It wasn’t even close, as the second-place finisher Albert Korir of Kenya clocked a 2:06:57 finish time. Ethiopian, Shura Kitata completed the podium after clocking 2:07:11.

Passing through 5K, Albert Korir was leading with the Ethiopian duo Jimel Yimer and Yenew Getahun running in second and third place, respectively.

As they passed the 10K mark, American (former Kenyan) Elkanah Kibet was leading the pack with Belgian athlete Koen Naert running in second place.

Tola took charge at halfway and led all the way through to the 25K. Tola, Yimer and Korir were now running in first, second and third places respectively through to 30K.

Tola was the first at 40K and appeared composed for the win. Korir followed closely as Shura Kitata was running in third place.

Canada’s Levins was in the mix through 30K, perhaps longer, however, apparently dropped out after 32K. Naert ran his best in April at the Rotterdam Marathon clocking a 2:06:56 finish time.

Women’s race

Two-time 5000m world champion and double Olympic silver medallist Hellen Obiri of Kenya ran through the finish line in the time of 2:27:23.

Obiri, age 33, outran Ethiopian Letsenbet Gidney late in the race and especially dropped the hammer over the final 400m. The two had been stride-for-stride for parts of the race before Obiri managed to drop the pace with authority.

Gidey finished six seconds back. Defending champion Sharon Lokedi from Kenya rounded out the podium with a 2:27:33 clocking. Billed as one of the greatest women’s fields ever, five athletes ran sub 2:28:00.

Fourteen runners at the starting line of the elite field brought to the line top-level resumes. Three had PBs of sub-2:20. The pace, however, was very conservative through the first 32K. The women were on a 2:31 pace, so it was a large lead pack through much of the race. American Molly Huddle led through 11K.

Obiri’s winning time was the slowest in New York since 2010 when Edna Kiplagat clocked a 2:28:20 winning time. Obiri said she thought about making a move earlier but decided against it.

During the final 10K the pace turned up. It was an exciting change of events, leaving a few athletes scrambling. American Kellyn Taylor led the group through 33K. Viola Cheptoo of Kenya, a runner-up in New York in 2021 took over, picking up the pace dramatically.

Taylor and Huddle would hang on for eighth and ninth place in 2:29:48 and 2:32:02, respectively. Six of the top seven women were Kenyan. Eight managed to get under 2:30:00.

Catherine Debrunner and Marcel Hug both of Switzerland won the wheelchair races in 1:39:32 and 1:25:29, respectively. Debrunner set a new course record with her effort.

1. Hellen Obiri (KEN) — 2:27:23
2. Letesenbet Gidey (ETH) – 2:27:29
3. Sharon Lokedi (KEN) – 2:27:33
4. Brigid Kosgei (KEN) – 2:27:45
5. Mary Ngugi (KEN) – 2:27:53
6. Viola Cheptoo (KEN) – 2:28:11
7. Edna Kiplagat (KEN) – 2:29:40
8. Kellyn Taylor (USA) – 2:29:48
9. Molly Huddle (USA) – 2:32:02
10. Fantu Zewude Jifar (ETH) – 2:34:10

1. Tamirat Tola (ETH) — 2:04:58 CR
2. Albert Korir (KEN) – 2:06:57
3. Shura Kitata (ETH) – 2:07:11
4. Abdi Nageeye (NED) – 2:10:21
5. Koen Naert (BEL) – 2:10:25
6. Maru Teferi (ISR) – 2:10:28
7. Iliass Aouani (ITA) – 2:10:54
8. Edward Cheserek (KEN) – 2:11:07
9. Jemal Yimer (ETH) – 2:11:31
10. Futsum Zienasellassie (USA) – 2:12:09
11. Elkanah Kibet (USA) – 2:12:23
DNF. Cam Levins (CAN)

Women’s Wheelchair
1. Catherine Debrunner (SUI) — 1:39:32 CR
2. Manuela Schar (SUI) – 1:47:54
3. Susannah Scaroni (USA) – 1:48:14*
4. Eden Rainbow-Cooper (GBR) – 1:49:34
5. Aline Dos Santos Rocha (BRA) –1:53:25
6. Tatyana McFadden (USA) – 1:53:31*
7. Madison de Rozario (AUS) – 1:53:47
8. Jenna Fesemyer (USA) – 1:59:19
9. Vanessa de Souza (BRA) – 1:59:51
10. Christie Dawes (AUS) – 1:59:55
*Qualifies for 2024 U.S. Paralympic team.

Men’s Wheelchair
1. Marcel Hug (SUI) – 1:25:29
2. Daniel Romanchuk (USA) – 1:30:07*
3. Jetze Plat (NED) – 1:34:22
4. Aaron Pike (USA) –1:39:58*
5. Sho Watanabe (JPN) – 1:40:01
6. Evan Correll (USA) – 1:40:06
7. Johnboy Smith (GBR) – 1:40:09
8. Patrick Monahan (IRL) – 1:40:14
9. Brian Siemann (USA) – 1:40:23
10. Simon Lawson (GBR) – 1:42:27
*Qualifies for 2024 U.S. Paralympic team.