The Los Angeles Marathon has another two-time champion.
Elisha Barno of Kenya won the L.A. Marathon in dramatic fashion Sunday, passing countryman John Korir over the final meters in the closest finish of the race’s 34-year history.
Barno won the men’s race in a time of 2 hours, 11 minutes and 46 seconds. Korir finished second (2:11:52), and Juan Luis Barrios (2:11.59) of Mexico was third.
Barno has won the Los Angeles Marathon twice — his first win came in 2017.
Korir, the brother of two-time L.A. Marathon champion Wesley Korir (2009-10), broke away from the main group of elite men runners before the 20-mile mark and appeared set to win after building a big gap over Barno and Barrios heading into the last mile and a half. However, Korir’s pace began to slow over the final mile, allowing Barno to run past him on Ocean Ave. about 150 meters before the finish line.
On the women’s side, Askale Merachi of Ethiopia broke the “stadium to the sea” course record with a winning time of 2:24:12 seconds. She broke the previous mark set by Lidiya Grigoryeva in 2006 by nearly a minute.
Kenya’s Cynthia Jerop finished second (2:25:54) and countrywoman Lucy Karimi (2:26:15) was third.
Merachi and Barno both receive $23,000 for winning their respective races.
Joshua Cassidy (1:31:48) won the men’s wheelchair race and Katrina Gerhard (1:56:22) took first in women’s wheelchair.
The annual race, which begins at Dodger Stadium and weaves past various Los Angeles landmarks on the way to Santa Monica, attracted 24,000 runners this year. The field consisted of runners from every state and 66 countries.