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MIT Senior Places 32nd In Boston Marathon

By Sam Hwang


MIT senior Daniel R. Feldman took 32nd out of more than 14,000 runners in the 106th Boston Marathon Monday, finishing the 26.2 mile course in 2:23:32 for the sixth-fastest time among American runners.

“I surprised myself with the marathon because I honestly didn’t think I could run that fast,” Feldman said. “It was a good day for running because the conditions were just about right. ... I went out at a good pace and ended up finishing with the same pace.”

Feldman has been running in cross country and long-distance track events since high school and has been running at MIT since his freshman year. When asked about his training, Feldman said, “I ran 10 to 15 miles a day to train for the Boston marathon. I pretty much took it easy in preparation for the race. I ate healthy and trained about five days a week with regular runs along with really long runs scheduled in.”

Some run, others watch

Many MIT students ran in the Boston marathon without officially qualifying and entering the race, a practice known to marathoners as “bandit running.” One such student, Jerry Ing ’04, said of the race, “It was really fun going out there and running the race. It was a nice day and I was really proud of myself that I could finish the race. I am definitely going to run again someday.”

MIT students who did not run in the race also participated during the day with various activities. Many students went out to Kenmore Square to watch their friends and other runners race by. Lavoska Barton ’05 was one of the many students who went out to Kenmore Square. “It was really exciting to watch everyone run by. We were all cheering and rooting for MIT students,” he said of the race. Phi Sigma Kappa hosted its annual marathon party with WBCN radio.

Kenyans sweep marathon

The day was almost perfect for running with a temperature of 56 F with a gentle breeze, although it did get hotter as the day went on. This year, 16,936 runners entered the race, 14,837 runners started the race, and 14,572 runners finished the race.

To officially qualify for the Boston marathon this year, one had to run another qualifying marathon within the past 18 months. For men aged 18-34, one had to finish the qualifying marathon under 3 hours and 10 minutes and for women aged 18-34, one had to finish the qualifying marathon under 3 hours and 40 minutes.

Two Kenyans, Margaret Okayo and Rodgers Rop, won the women’s and men’s races, respectively. Okayo again ran in course-record time and Rop finished in the fastest men’s time in four years. Keith Dowling Jr. of Reston, Va. was the first American to finish the race, coming in 15th.

Indeed, this year’s marathon might be remembered for the return of Kenyans to the top of the time sheet in the men’s race. Kenyans had won the marathon for 10 consecutive years until Lee Bong Ju, a South Korean, won last year. This year, as Lee faded to fifth, Kenyan men took the first four places, six of the first seven and nine of the first 13.

South Africa’s Ernst Van Dyk won the men’s wheelchair division with a time of 1:23:19, and Switzerland’s Edith Hunkeler took the women's wheelchair title with a time of 1:45:57.