Runner in Purple Is Real Shock of Boston Marathon

Sarah Sellers is a virtual unknown
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 17, 2018 4:49 PM CDT
Updated Apr 18, 2018 5:03 AM CDT
Runner in Purple Is Real Shock of Boston Marathon
Sarah Sellers, of the United States, center in purple with black cap, sets out from the start in the middle of the elite womens pack during the 122nd running of the Boston Marathon in Hopkinton, Mass., Monday, April 16, 2018. Sellers finished second.   (AP Photo/Mary Schwalm)

That an American female won the Boston Marathon for the first time since 1985 made headlines, but it's the woman who came in second who is grabbing them now. Eyes are shifting to Sarah Sellers, who finished 4 minutes and 10 seconds behind winner Desiree Linden with a time of 2 hours, 44 minutes, 4 seconds. But while Linden is a two-time Olympian, Sellers is a virtual unknown: A promising track career in college hit an early end due to a broken foot her junior year, reports the Salt Lake Tribune. She had only run one marathon prior, in Utah in September, in order to qualify for Boston. The 26-year-old has no sponsors, and did much of her training starting at 4am, before heading to her full-time job as a nurse anesthetist in Tucson, Arizona.

CNN picks up this tweet from Kit Fox of Runners World as a sign of just how unexpected her win was: The first question she was asked in a post-race news conference was "Please introduce yourself. Tell us who you are." Sellers logs about 85 miles a week, and still relies on Weber State track coach Paul Pilkington for advice. She now walks away with $75,000 in prize money, which she says she and her husband will put toward their student debt. As for that first marathon in Huntsville, Utah, she didn't just win it: She set a course record. (More Boston Marathon stories.)

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