MIAMI--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Mariska Kramer Postma didn't look like the typical jubilant marathon winner Sunday as she crossed the finish line at the 2014 Life Time Miami Marathon, a race which is becoming one of Miami's premier International events.
Kramer Postma swatted at the finish line tape in disgust because her winning time of 2:49:28 missed her target in the race by 11 minutes. When you are winning South Florida's elite distance race for the second year in a row, and overcoming a pre-race stomach flu on top of it, you have a right to be picky about your time.
“There simply was nothing in my legs, no energy," said Kramer Postma, a native of the Netherlands.
Kramer Postma's legs serviced her well enough as she and Kenyan Samuel Malakwen, the 2012 winner who pulled away from Julius Choge in the final five miles, became the first two-time Marathon winners in an event which began with less than 4000 runners 12 years ago and sold out at 25,000 runners for the third consecutive year.
Malakwen was one of four Kenyan men to enjoy top finishes Sunday. In the Half-Marathon, Edward Tabut (1:06:45) won by nearly two minutes over countryman George Towett (1:08:30) while Cesar Cedeno (1:08:50) of Costa Rica came in third.
Shannon Miller, who lives in Bronx, NY, won the women’s half marathon (1:21:08) with Yolymar Pineda (1:22:00) of Venezuela second and Miami’s Angelo Brito third (1:22:38).
Eighty countries and all 50 states were represented in the field, with a particularly strong contingent coming from South and Central America and the Caribbean. The event has evolved into a significant tourism boost for South Florida with an estimated $55 million economic impact. Nearly 55% of the runners arrived for the race by air, and they also brought along an estimated 11,000 support spectators.
The race first traveled north on Downtown Miami's Biscayne Blvd before crossing the MacArthur Causeway against the scenic backdrop of Miami’s cruise ship row to South Beach. Runners passed through the Venetian Islands back into Miami's Arts District, and then Marathoners continued into Coconut Grove before turning back North along the Brickell Avenue Financial District to the finish line at Bayfront Park.
The continued growth of interest among Latin American runners has race organizers considering growth for the first time in three years as they look ahead to 2015.
"Miami is the destination race for Latin America," Race Director Javier Sanchez said.
“Miami's diversity and proximity is welcoming to many International runners as a convenient place to visit and run," said Miami Marathon Co-Founder Frankie Ruiz. “Some of the small countries in Latin America have had some runners place and then they are going back and talking about it. It is starting to trickle down to the masses."