2012 Boston Marathon

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2012 Boston Marathon
Wesley Korir 2012 Boston Marathon.jpg
Kenyan Wesley Korir celebrates his victory in the men's race
Venue Boston, Massachusetts
Dates April 16
← 2011
2013 →

The 2012 Boston Marathon took place in Boston, Massachusetts on Monday April 16, 2012. It was the 116th edition of the mass-participation marathon. Organized by the Boston Athletic Association, it was the first of the World Marathon Majors series to be held in 2012. A total of 22,426 runners started the race. The competition was held in hot running conditions, reaching 88 degrees Fahrenheit (31° Celsius) that afternoon, and some of the 27,000 registered runners opted to take up the organizers' offer to defer their entry until the 2013 race.[1][2]

Wesley Korir and Sharon Cherop won the elite men's and women's races respectively. Josh Cassidy and Shirley Reilly were the winners of the wheelchair racing section. In the masters section, Uli Steidl won the men's marathon and Svetlana Pretot (ninth overall) was the women's champion.[3][4]

Race description

Build up

The champions from 2011, Geoffrey Mutai and Caroline Kilel, announced their intentions to try to defend their titles at the start of the year.[5] A large number of fast elite runners were invited to compete at the event, most of them being Ethiopian or Kenyan. Mutai was the pre-race favourite, with his two most prominent rivals being 2010 Boston winner Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot and 2010 New York City Marathon champion Gebre Gebremariam. Levy Matebo and Wilson Chebet were the other fastest runners, who entered the competition with personal bests under two hours and six minutes. Defending women's champion Kilel was not the fastest entrant in her section: Russia's Galina Bogomolova and Ethiopians Aselefech Mergia and Mamitu Daska had better personal bests. Sharon Cherop (third at the 2011 race) and Firehiwot Dado (reigning New York champion) were also prominent competitors.[6][7]

The most prominent American athletes, such as 2011 Boston top-five finishers Ryan Hall, Desiree Davila and Kara Goucher, missed the 2012 edition of the Boston race as they focused their preparations towards the marathon at the 2012 London Olympics instead.[7]

Men's race

Men's runner-up Levy Matebo at Heartbreak Hill.

In the men's race, fifteen runners reached the halfway point in a time of 1:06:11 hours (some minutes slower than previous years). Soon after, Mathew Kisorio upped the pace and reduced the leading pack to himself, Matebo, Mutai, Chebet, Wesley Korir and Laban Korir. After 18 miles (29 km) Kisorio and Matebo had broken away and defending champion Mutai had pulled out of the race altogether.[3][8]

As the course began its uphill stage, Kisorio slowed significantly and Matebo held a clear lead at 23 miles. However, he too began to slow and Wesley Korir, who had kept a more even pace, made his way up the field and took the lead at 25 miles (40 km). Korir won in a time of 2:12:40 hours with Matebo over twenty seconds behind. The rest of the midpoint leaders slowed in the latter stages and Kenya's Bernard Kipyego and American Jason Hartmann moved up to take third and fourth place.[3][8]

Women's race

The women's field was reduced in calibre before the start as Bogomolova, Aselefech Mergia and Mamitu Daska were all pre-race withdrawals. The race began slowly—the runners responding to the heat—and it was not until 12.5 miles (20 km) that the large pack of elite runners began to break up. By the halfway point Agnes Kiprop and Rita Jeptoo had fallen half a minute behind. Upon reaching the first major uphill section after 17 miles (27 km), Caroline Rotich, Diana Sigei Chepkemoi and Genet Getaneh progressively fell behind the leading pace. A volunteer attempting to assist the leading runners by handing them some water actually disrupted the pack at 18 miles (29 km) and defending champion Caroline Kilel dramatically slowed soon after, eventually dropping out at 40 km.[2][4]

The final section of the race at Heartbreak Hill saw Firehiwot Dado fall out of contention, leaving just a Kenyan trio of Sharon Cherop, Georgina Rono and Jemima Jelagat Sumgong to battle out the medal positions. Cherop increased the pace and at the 25-mile mark (40 km) Rono had slipped behind and just Cherop and Sumgong remained. The two engaged in a battle to the finish and it was the 2011 runner-up Cherop who came out on top, recording a time of 2:31:50 hours, with Sumgong finishing just two seconds behind. Rono made it a Kenyan podium sweep as she was next to cross the line just over a minute later.[2][4]


Elite men

Wesley Korir mid-race in the leading pack of the 2012 Boston Marathon
Place Athlete Nationality Time
Gold medal icon.svg Wesley Korir  Kenya 2:12:40
Silver medal icon.svg Levy Matebo  Kenya 2:13:06
Bronze medal icon.svg Bernard Kipyego  Kenya 2:13:13
4 Jason Hartmann  United States 2:14:31
5 Wilson Chebet  Kenya 2:14:56
6 Laban Korir  Kenya 2:15:29
7 Michel Butter  Netherlands 2:16:38
8 David Barmasai  Kenya 2:17:16
9 Hideaki Tamura  Japan 2:18:15
10 Mathew Kisorio  Kenya 2:18:15

Elite women

Jemima Jelagat Sumgong and Sharon Cherop racing in the final stage of the women's race
Place Athlete Nationality Time
Gold medal icon.svg Sharon Cherop  Kenya 2:31:50
Silver medal icon.svg Jemima Jelagat Sumgong  Kenya 2:31:52
Bronze medal icon.svg Georgina Rono  Kenya 2:33:09
4 Firehiwot Dado  Ethiopia 2:34:56
5 Diana Sigei  Kenya 2:35:40
6 Rita Jeptoo  Kenya 2:35:53
7 Mayumi Fujita  Japan 2:39:11
8 Nadezdha Leonteva  Russia 2:40:40
9 Svetlana Pretot  France 2:40:50
10 Sheri Piers  United States 2:41:55

Wheelchair men

Shirley Reilly beating Wakako Tsuchida to win the women's wheelchair race
Place Athlete Nationality Time
Gold medal icon.svg Josh Cassidy  Canada 1:18:25
Silver medal icon.svg Kurt Fearnley  Australia 1:21:39
Bronze medal icon.svg Kota Hokinoue  Japan 1:23:26

Wheelchair women

Place Athlete Nationality Time
Gold medal icon.svg Shirley Reilly  United States 1:37:36
Silver medal icon.svg Wakako Tsuchida  Japan 1:37:37
Bronze medal icon.svg Diane Roy  Canada 1:42:37


  1. ^ Boston Marathon Results Kenya's Wesley Korir, Cherop win Archived April 20, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.. Fox News (April 16, 2012). Retrieved on April 27, 2012.
  2. ^ a b c Morse, Parker (April 16, 2012). Korir and Cherop the best as warm weather slows Boston. IAAF. Retrieved on April 28, 2012.
  3. ^ a b c O'Brien, James (April 2012). Kenya's Wesley Korir pulls away in the last mile to win over Levy Matebo. Boston Athletic Association. Retrieved on April 28, 2012.
  4. ^ a b c Huebner, Barbara (April 2012). It was a duel to the finish, as Kenya's Sharon Cherop unleashes kick on Boylston Street to pull away from Jelagat Sumgong Archived April 23, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.. Boston Athletic Association. Retrieved on April 27, 2012.
  5. ^ Mutai and Kilel to defend titles in Boston. IAAF/BAA (January 5, 2012). Retrieved on April 28, 2012.
  6. ^ Boston Marathon announces elite fields. IAAF (February 9, 2012). Retrieved on April 28, 2012.
  7. ^ a b Morse, Parker (April 13, 2012). Mutai is the outstanding favourite in Boston - PREVIEW. IAAF. Retrieved on April 28, 2012.
  8. ^ a b Nearman, Steve (April 16, 2012). Kenyans weather the heat to win Boston Marathon. The Washington Times. Retrieved on April 27, 2012.
  • 2012 Boston Marathon Top Finishers. Boston Marathon. Retrieved on 2012-04-28.
  • Boston Marathon Results Kenya's Wesley Korir, Cherop win. Fox News (2012-04-16). Retrieved on 2012-04-27.
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