PHOTOS: Boston Marathon 2017 – Scenes from Heartbreak Hill by Jason Suarez
If you’ve run the Boston Marathon or if you’ve read up on its history, you know about Heartbreak Hill. It can make or break a runner’s race.
That was certainly the case on Monday as the elite women’s race saw a pack of five dwindle down to just Edna Kiplagat running the last five miles alone. The men’s race was cut down to just a duel between Galen Rupp and eventual-winner Geoffrey Kirui. I saw people chasing PR’s having their dreams dashed.
The name for the hill comes from the 1936 race, when Johnny Kelley (who now has a statue along the course) turned to Ellison Brown and patted him on the shoulder while making a pass on the assent. The pat on the back was all that Brown needed for extra motivation to pass Kelley. Kelley and his hopes of repeating as a champion were done. Boston Globe sportswriter Jerry Nason recapped the moment by writing that it broke Kelley’s heart.