CAPE ELIZABETH — Mary Keitany showed her speed to her TD Beach to Beacon 10K host family. Trouble was, the 34-year-old Kenyan was doing it at 1 a.m. Saturday.

“The fire alarm went off and it was really loud. Mary was tearing up the stairs screaming fire as I was tearing down the stairs,” said Emily Cooke, Keitany’s host. “I’m thinking, we have one job: give her a good night’s sleep.”

It turned out the alarm was unwarranted. It was Keitany’s foes who got burned Saturday. Keitany lowered the women’s course record by a staggering 14.4 seconds to win the race in 30 minutes, 45.0 seconds.

“When I was at five miles someone was saying, you are going to go and break the course record and I said, ‘Wow, if I’m still at this pace, let me maintain,’ ” Keitany said. “A race is a race and you have to listen to your body, and if you think you are 100 percent and can keep your pace, then you can go.”

The previous record of 30:59.4 was set by the 2010 winner, Lineth Chepkurui of Kenya. Chepkurui is the only other woman to run under 31 minutes.

Defending champion Wude Ayalew of Ethiopia finished second in 31:40, 16 seconds faster than her winning time in 2015. Keitany, Ayalew and third-place finisher Caroline Chepkoech-Kipki (32:03) broke from the pack at three miles, with Chepkoech-Kipki dropping off the lead pace around Mile 5.


Emily Sisson of Providence, Rhode Island, was fourth and the top American in 32:21. Six American women were in the top 10.

For Keitany, it was her second course record in a week. She broke a 12-year-old mark at the demanding 7-mile Bix 7 in Davenport, Iowa, on July 30, earning $12,500. She made another $12,500 at Beach to Beacon – $10,000 for the win and $2,500 for the course record.

Keitany, a two-time winner of both the New York City and London marathons, showed she should have been on Kenya’s Olympic team, selected by the nation’s Olympic committee.

For the first time, the event had a separate elite women’s start.

“Right from the beginning I knew that (Keitany) was in control,” said fifth-place finisher Aliphine Tuliamuk, an American citizen from Kenya who lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Tuliamuk, eighth in the 10,000 meters at the U.S. Olympic trials, was the last American to be with the lead pack.


Sisson, 10th in the 10,000 at the trials, tracked down Tuliamuk and passed her on the final downhill before entering Fort Williams Park.

Sisson won $5,000 as the top American woman. The effort took a toll. She spent more than an hour in the medical tent.

“I think I pushed myself a little over the line when I was trying to catch Tuliamuk in that last mile,” Sisson said. “I did catch her, but she made me work for it. I think I overheated a little bit.”

Other American women in the top 10 were Sara Hall, 33, of Redding, California, sixth (32:46); Jordan Hasay, 24, of Beaverton, Oregon, seventh (33:04); Maddie Van Beek, 24, Fargo, North Dakota, ninth (33:23); and Elaina Balouris, 24, Brighton, Massachusetts, 10th (33:50).

“It wasn’t my fastest 10K but I was happy with how I competed and I really loved the crowd out there,” Hall said.

Among the top Americans, only Hasay had run Beach to Beacon previously (fourth in 2014). It was the first 10K road race for Van Beek, who competed in the Olympic trials steeplechase.


Michelle Lilienthal of Portland was the first Maine woman, placing 16th overall with a time of 34:53. Lilienthal set the Maine record of 33:39 in 2014.

Lilienthal, 34, missed the 2015 Beach to Beacon, nursing a broken foot and attending a wedding in Nova Scotia. Then came an Achilles’ heel problem that ultimately led her to stop halfway through the Olympic marathon trials.

“I knew I was fit today. I wanted to run as fast as I could,” Lilienthal said. “I’m happy with it. I’m happy most of all just to be healthy and racing again.”

Sheri Piers, 45, of Falmouth was the second Maine female and 18th among all women in 36:01. Erica Jesseman, 27, of Scarborough was third (36:26, 19th overall).

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