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Eritrea’s Ghirmay Ghebreslassie wins NYC marathon

By LARRY FLEISHERNovember 6, 2016
Ghirmay Ghebreslassie, of Eritrea, reacts as he crosses the finish line first in the men's division of the 2016 New York City Marathon in New York, Sunday, Nov. 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
Ghirmay Ghebreslassie, of Eritrea, reacts as he crosses the finish line first in the men's division of the 2016 New York City Marathon in New York, Sunday, Nov. 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

NEW YORK (AP) — Eritrea’s Ghirmay Ghebreslassie has won the New York City Marathon in the men’s field.

Ghebreslassie finished his debut in New York with an unofficial time of 2 hours, 7 minutes, 51 seconds.

For most of the course, the men’s field was a three-man race between Ghebreslassie, Kenya’s Lucas Rotich and Ethiopia’s Lelisa Desisa. By mile 20, Ghebreslassie gradually began pulling away.

The 20-year-old beat Rotich by 62 seconds and became the youngest male winner in New York. The previous youngest male winners were Alberto Salazar in 1980 and Tom Fleming in 1973, who won as 22-year-olds.

Defending champion Stanley Biwott withdrew at the 10-mile mark with a right calf injury. He also dropped out in the Rio Olympics after getting sick.

American Abdi Abdirahman placed third.

Desisa, who was the runner-up in New York in 2014 and a two-time Boston Marathon winner, dropped out at the 22nd mile.

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This story has been corrected to show that the winner’s last name is spelled Ghebreslassie, not Ghebresiassie, and that he’s 20 years old, not 19.

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