With breakneck pace, Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopia won the men’s group of the annual New York City Marathon with a time of two hours, five minutes, 59 seconds.
Desisa beat out second place Shura Kitata by two seconds, The Washington Post reported. With the win, the 28-year-old runner gets to take home the $100,000 grand prize.
In last year’s race, Geoffrey Kamworor of Kenya, who came in third place on Sunday, claimed the top spot by holding off fellow countryman Wilson Kipsang, beating him by just three seconds for his first major victory. Kamworor ran the race in two hours, 10 minutes, 53 seconds in 2017, and returned to the marathon this year for a chance to defend his title.
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Sunday’s race began on Staten Island, and runners made their way through Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and, finally, to Central Park in Manhattan. The marathon saw nearly 55,000 participants hit the streets of New York, and a slew of celebrities got in the mix as well.
Other endurance runners that competed in the marathon were Molly Huddle and 2018 Boston Marathon winner Desiree Linden. Shalane Flanagan of the U.S. raced as well, a year after she became the first American woman to win the N.Y.C. Marathon in over four decades. For the men, four-time Olympian Abdi Abdirahman was among many to represent the U.S.
According to the New York Daily News, runners from Ethiopia and Kenya (like last year’s winner, Kamworor) make up nearly all of the top 50 fastest times in the race’s history. The only exception? The 47th fastest time, which is held by Ryan Hall, an American. When looking at the top 100 fastest times, Kenyans hold 64 top spots while Ethiopians claim 34. Runners from the U.S. only appear twice.