Susannah Scaroni Sets World Wheelchair Record to Cap Off a Memorable Return to the Roads of Boston
BOSTON – It was an American sweep at the 2022 B.A.A. 10K presented by Brigham and Women’s Hospital, with Leonard Korir (28:00) and Keira D’Amato (31:17) winning the professional open divisions and Susannah Scaroni and Hermin Garic capturing the wheelchair crowns. The pace was as hot as the weather, with the wily veteran Korir setting a personal best and Scaroni shattering the wheelchair world record for the distance.
“It feels really nice!” said Scaroni, who won a gold medal at 5,000 meters in the 2020 Paralympics but two weeks later was struck by a car while training. “It’s always great to be at a race where they’re trying to make it world-record eligible.” Scaroni broke the tape in 21:56, shattering Tatyana McFadden’s previous mark of 23:34.
As pleased as she was with the record, Scaroni was also excited to win the race outright. Asked if she had ever been the first wheelchair athlete, man or woman, across the line, she beamed. “Oh no, never! I didn’t expect that at all.”
Winning the men’s wheelchair race was Boston Marathon veteran Hermin Garic, in 22:07. “It feels awesome, coming back to Boston.”
In the men’s open division, a pack of 17, led by Bravin Kiptoo, went through the first mile in a scorching 4:21.
“When I saw the first people were so fast, I knew they were going to pay,” said Korir, a 2016 Olympian who has already won national titles this year at the half marathon and 25K. “It was like suicide. I said, ‘let me just hang in there and strike when the time comes.’”
The men ran the second mile in 4:24, but had slowed to 4:37 by the fifth. By that time, it was Kennedy Kimutai and Korir running neck-and-neck. “With a mile to go, I realized I was feeling so strong. I said, ‘let me just go now.’”
He would surge ahead to win in 28:00, nine seconds faster than the personal best he set on this course in 2014. Kimutai would finish second in 28:07, with Philemon Kiplimo third in 28:09. American Ben True was fourth in the same time; Ben Flanagan, fifth in 28:11, set a Canadian 10K record and also set a national mark through 8K in 22:30.
In the women’s race, D’Amato said that her goal was to race aggressively and go after the pace. Mission accomplished: A pack hit mile 1 in 5:05, but by mile 3 (reached in 15:08) she and Kenya’s Sharon Lokedi were gapping the field. As they battled, they ran mile 4 in 4:29, 30 seconds ahead of their chasers.
“We were battling it out,” said D’Amato, who in January broke the American record for the marathon when she ran 2:19:12 in Houston. “That was a fierce duel. With 1200 [meters] to go, she was breathing really hard and I just went by her.” Lokedi succumbed to the heat and humidity on Charles Street roughly 200 meters from the line and would not finish.
American Emily Sisson finished as runner-up in 32:03, with the 42-year-old Edna Kiplagat, the 2017 Boston Marathon champion, third in 32:09.
Claiming the inaugural B.A.A. 10K Para Athletics Divisions were Adrianne Haslet (1:15:19) and Marko Cheseto Lemtukei (35:44) for T61-T64 (lower limb impairment) classification and Erich Manser (50:49) and Jennifer Herring (45:41) in the T11-T15 (vision impairment) classification. Haslet earned the title on her birthday, and was exuberant at the opportunity to win on the roads of Boston.
“To not just be invited to run a race, but invited to compete means that we’re being included among some of the world’s best runners with the world-class B.A.A. as hosts. It can’t get much better than that,” said Haslet.
Approximately 5,146 participants crossed the finish line of today’s B.A.A. 10K. Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the B.A.A. 10K’s presenting sponsor and exclusive fundraising partner, fielded a team of more than 350 fundraising runners. Since 2016, more than 2,100 runners and 180 teams have raised $1.2 million to fuel life-giving breakthroughs at Brigham and Women’s Hospital through the B.A.A. 10K.
The third and final event of the 2022 B.A.A. Distance Medley will be the B.A.A. Half Marathon presented by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Jimmy Fund on Sunday, November 13. Registration is currently open within the B.A.A.’s online platform, Athletes’ Village.