Arts & Entertainment

America's Meb Keflezighi wins an emotional Boston Marathon

Meb Keflezighi of the United States crosses the finish line in first place to win the 2014 B.A.A. Boston Marathon on April 21, 2014 in Boston, Massachusetts. Meb becomes the first American winner of the Boston Marathon since 1983. Today marks the 118th Boston Marathon; security presence has been increased this year, due to two bombs that were detonated at the finish line last year, killing three people and injuring more than 260 others.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Meb Keflezighi of the United States crosses the finish line in first place to win the 2014 B.A.A. Boston Marathon on April 21, 2014 in Boston, Massachusetts. Meb becomes the first American winner of the Boston Marathon since 1983. Today marks the 118th Boston Marathon; security presence has been increased this year, due to two bombs that were detonated at the finish line last year, killing three people and injuring more than 260 others. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

In the men's field of the 118th Boston Marathon, American Meb Keflezighi ended a 31-year drought for U.S.runners, after defeating Wilson Chebet of Kenya in a race that came down to the final mile.

According to race officials, Keflezighi, 38, ran a 4:56 split at mile 23, when he built a 20-second lead. But that lead dwindled as the runners neared the finish line.

The crowd roared as Keflezighi crossed the finish line, celebrating a much-needed victory in the historic race.

The women's field was won by Rita Jeptoo of Kenya, who set a course record with a time of 2:18:57 as she successfully defended her title as the Boston champion. American Shalane Flanagan, a Massachusetts native, finished sixth in the race, posting a personal best with her time of 2:22:01.

For the second year in a row, Tatyana McFadden of the U.S. has won the women's wheelchair race.

You can follow NPR's live blog of the race here.

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