Beginning in 2021: Emily Sisson conquers a broken heart, dominates 10,000 in USA Track and Field Trials
Sisson finished in 2:18:29, 43 seconds behind the U.S. record set by Keira D’Amato in Houston in January. Before D’Amato, that record had stood for 16 years; now it has been downgraded twice in 10 months, as D’Amato expected.
“There are a lot of American women working for that record too, so I don’t think it’s going to be mine for very long if I don’t lower it myself,” she said before the Berlin Marathon two weeks ago. D’Amato, who did not run in Chicago, joined Sisson at the finish line, along with women Deena Kastor and Joan Benoit Samuelson, who held the U.S. record before her.
“It’s been fantastic,” Sisson said, according to NBC Chicago. “I mean, the women standing here today, they’ve all accomplished so much, so it’s an incredible honor to be a part of that.”
Sisson said she didn’t realize the record had been reached until very close to the finish line.
“I was just instructed to stop my pace and didn’t think about time at all, so I didn’t know what my pace was, and I thought, about a mile left,” she said. “A couple of people told me to pick it up. , so I thought, ‘Oh, I have to be close to breaking 2:20 or the American record,’ but I don’t know which one.”
The Chicago race marks Sisson’s return to the marathon after dropping out of the 2020 Olympic marathon trials after 22 miles, despite her being the most popular. Her only other marathon was in London, where she ran 2:23:08 in 2019.
She is 37 years old. Mother of two children. and America’s fastest female marathon runner.
“The Olympic Marathon Trials — it broke my heart,” six-time national champion Sisson said later. “Normally, I’m good at moving on from bad games, but I’m really struggling.”
At the Tokyo Summer Olympics, Sisson was the top U.S. player after winning the event at the 2021 U.S. Trials, finishing 10th out of 10,000. She broke Kastor’s 17-year-old tryout record set in 2004 with a time of 31:03.82. Sisson, who set a U.S. record for the half-marathon (1:07:11) in May, recently told Forbes that she is growing more comfortable with races such as Chicago, one of the world’s top six marathons.
“As I gain more experience in the sport, I’m able to tackle these big game days with more confidence and poise than I did when I was younger,” she said. “I just reiterated to myself that I did my best and all I need to do is give it my all.”
Five of Chicago’s top 10 female finishers are American: Susanna Sullivan sixth in 2:25:14, Sara Vaughn in 2:26:23 Seven, Maggie Montoya was eighth with 2:28:07 and Makena Morley was tenth with 2:30:28.
Kenya’s Benson Kipruto won the men’s division in 2:04:24 and Conner Mantz finished seventh in 2:08:16 for the top American finisher.
Switzerland’s Marcel Hug won the men’s wheelchair race in 1:25:20, adding Chicago to his 2022 main marathon in Tokyo, Berlin and London. Susannah Scaroni of the United States won her first major marathon in the women’s wheelchair race in 1:45:48.