Buzunesh Deba named 2014 Boston Marathon champion

BOSTON Buzunesh Deba of Ethiopia has been named the winner of the 2014 Boston Marathon, following the disqualification of Rita Jeptoo from the event. Deba finished in a time of 2:19:59. As a result, she becomes the course record holder. Her performance bested that of Margaret Okayo, who ran of 2:20:43 in 2002.

On April 21, 2014, the 26-year-old Deba and a lead pack of women set a blistering pace from the line in Hopkinton, remaining at least 45 seconds faster than the checkpoint times of Okayo in 2002. After 25 kilometers, Deba ran even faster and put the remaining competitors in her wake. In what stands as the fastest women's race in Boston Marathon history, the top three women beat Okayo's mark, and Deba's performance is the only women's sub-2:20 performance in race history. In sixth place was Shalane Flanagan, who ran the fastest time ever by an American woman in Boston in 2:22:02, good for ninth fastest all-time.

"I feel great and really happy being named the 2014 Boston Marathon champion, the most prestigious marathon in the world, and I encourage all concerned stakeholders to work on a clean sport," said Deba, who lives in the Bronx with her husband and coach, Worku Beyi.

Deba, a constant member of the John Hancock Elite Athlete Team in the Boston Marathon, finished third in the 2015 with a time of 2:25:09 and seventh in the 2016 race with a time of 2:33:56. She has finished second in the TCS New York City Marathon twice. Her 2014 victory set her personal record by more than three minutes.

�"Buzunesh Deba's sub-2:20 performance in 2014 was a magnificent achievement," recalled B.A.A. Chief Executive Officer Tom Grilk. �"To emerge victorious in the fastest women's race ever run in Boston was remarkable. We look forward to awarding her the praise she rightfully deserves in 2017."

Originally from Asella, Ethiopia, Deba moved to New York City in 2006. It has not yet been announced if she will compete in the 2017 Boston Marathon.