Amane Gobena of Ethiopia stole the show at the 2014 Los Angeles Marathon thanks to her top overall finishing time of two hours, 27 minutes and 37 seconds.
As a result of her epic performance in the 29th edition of the global spectacle, Gobena took home a cool $25,000. And she added an impressive $50,000 more to that total thanks to winning the gender challenge that saw the women start the marathon 17:41 before the men.
Here is the moment Amane Gobena won the women's elite race http://t.co/9JuXMRiq3f— LA Marathon (@lamarathon) March 9, 2014
On the men's side, Gebo Burka took home the $25,000 standard prize for his total time of 2:10:37. Both top finishers were closely chased by other athletes who turned in strong performances:
|3||Lauren Kleppin||United States||2:28:48|
Burka and Gobena took the stage after the marathon to claim their prizes:
The extent of Burka and Gobena's domination is even more impressive when one realizes the two emerged from a crowded field around 25,000 strong to start the race:
Gobena's triumph is certainly no surprise considering she finished second in 2009, which speaks well to a runner's ability to build off strong performances each year and eventually claim the top prize. This is encouraging for Tigist Tufa of Ethiopia, who came in second behind Gobena with a time of 2:28:04.
Lauren Kleppin of the United States continues to improve, as her third-place finish thanks to a 2:28:48 mark was faster than her previous best time.
As David Monti of Race Results Weekly points out, the time was a major upgrade on her previous best:
Kleppin has the look of a future star, and the strong finish is certainly something to build on moving forward.
Lani Rutto of Kenya was the second man to finish, doing so in 2:10:48. Defending champion Erick Mose of Kenya, who rallied in the final two miles of the race last year to win, had no such luck this time and came in third at 2:12:56.
Mose certainly fulfilled his expectations coming into the race, as he told Gary Klein of The Los Angeles Times, via the Sacramento Bee, that he was "expecting good results." That said, he did fail to propel his gender to a win, telling Klein that a win in that regard would come down to a strong start.
"We didn't start with a good pace," Mose said of the elite men. "This year, if everything goes well, we need to push ourselves to see if we can catch the ladies."
Interestingly enough, the gender gap appears to be continuing to close. As Klein points out, last year, the women started 18:35 before the men. Despite a shorter advantage, Gobena was still able to thwart Mose's ambitions this year.
As expected, the 2014 edition of the marathon continued the enthralling storylines of past events and hinted at the future of the sport as a whole. The 30th edition of the race has some lofty expectations to meet in 2015.