It’s a very Salty special edition of the Roundup and Roundtable, BOSTON MARATHON style! Where do we begin???
Des. We believed. It was hard to have a “favorite” going into this race but man, we’ve got a lot of Salty love for her. This time last year, we published “That Desiree Linden, She’s Second to None.” And now — finally — she’s first. Winning Boston is her first marathon win. Ever.
“She’s the first to admit that it’s strange how often her race results in a second place finish. She was second in her breakout 2008 U.S.A. Half Marathon Championship in Houston, at the 2011 Naples Half Marathon, at the 2011 Boston Marathon, at the 2012 Olympic Trials Marathon, at the 2013 U.S.A. Half Marathon Championship in Duluth, at the 2016 Olympic Trials Marathon, and at the 2016 U.S.A. Half Marathon Championship in Columbus. For all her achievements, she’s never won a National Championship or a major marathon, but she’d sure love to. Her desire to be a champion isn’t about asserting her dominance over her competitors, though. It’s the next frontier in Des’s pursuit of her own excellence. Because she hasn’t quite found it yet, that’s what keeps it fun.”
Hang on. Is it dusty in here or what?
One of the first newsworthy moments of the women’s elite race was when Shalane beelined for a portajohn in the early miles. She said something to Des, and darted off to the side. Des drifted off the back of the pack, giving Shalane a boost back up. For a few minutes, the pack strung out. Then Des and Shalane rolled back up on them.
“Honestly, at mile 2-3-4, I didn’t even feel like I was going to make it to the finish,” Des said after the race. “I told (Shalane) during the race, ‘If there’s anything I can do to help you out, let me know, because I might just drop out.’ When you work together, you never know what’s going to happen. Helping her helped me and I kinda got my legs back from there.”
Oh so at mile 2 you thought you were going to drop out and then you went on to win? I mean, I believe in the “don’t trust the first 10 minutes of any run” rule, but that’s a little extreme.
And then she went hunting. At 35k, Des took the lead and surged ahead — going on to win by 4 minutes.
Husband Ryan Linden was waiting at the finish, and if you weren’t crying already, you were once they showed him. “Better than any first look wedding photo I’ve ever seen,” one of my friends posted.
Des did not let up. She pressed the entire way, and didn’t even look like she was happy about the fact she was about to win until the final steps.
And then — things got extra crazy. With all the back-and-forth tv coverage, most of us didn’t know what was going on behind Des. Lo and behold, a woman comes across the finish line in an un-sponsored non-pro tank, plain cap, plain armbands … a completely regular looking runner.
Collectively, we all went, “Huh?”
Thanks to the Boston Globe, now we know. Sarah Sellers is a 26-year-old full-time nurse working in anesthesiology at Banner Health Center in Arizona. It was her second marathon ever (not super-surprising given her age). She told the Globe she didn’t know she was in second.
Pause. American women go 1-2 at the Boston Marathon?!?!? That’s a hell of a day.
BUT WAIT. THERE’S MORE.
Rachel Hyland, fourth in 2:44:29. Nicole Demercurio, fifth in 2:45:52. Shalane Flanagan, sixth in 2:46:31. Kimi Reed, seventh in 2:46:47. Joanna Thompson, 10th in 2:48:31. Molly Huddle, 13th in 2:50:28.
Seven of the top 10 spots.
This feels familiar.
In November, I wrote:
Started at the bottom, now we here.
Everything else you need to know:
- First American woman to win since 1985; first 1-2 finish by American women since 1979.
- Only top 4 were Olympic Trials qualifying times — and they were B standards
- Kellyn Taylor DNF’d, hypothermia.
- Deena Kastor DNF’d, not sure cause, but she’s okay.
- Jordan Hasay DNS’d, stress reaction
- Shalane like literally handed the baton to Des in November
- Canadian Krista Duchene was third in 2:44:20. P.S. She’s 41.
- The elite women’s field started at 9:30 ahead of the elite men and all of wave 1. Jessica Chichester started with wave 1 and ran a time fast enough for fifth female. This presents an interesting conundrum. What we know for sure is she’s not eligible for prize money — it is very clear that you must be part of the elite women’s start to win money. And okay, so she’s fifth by chip time, but way different by gun time. “It’s just weird because what place does she say she finished?” asked pro runner Esther Atkins on Twitter. “I guess I’d say I won the mass race!”
- PIMENTO set a PR! 3:13:54. Congrats, Pim!
Today’s roundtable: Tell us your Boston 2018 stories! Did you run? IF SO TELL ALL NOW. Did you watch? What was your favorite moment?