Christie Dawes records personal best in Boston Marathon

Christie Dawes
Christie Dawes

Newcastle wheelchair athlete Christie Dawes has recorded a personal best time in claiming sixth at the Boston Marathon.

Dawes finished in one hour, 37 minutes and 12 seconds in the women’s race, while fellow Novocastrian Kurt Fearnley finished fourth in 1:20.28.

The men’s race was won by Marcel Hug, of Switzerland, in 1:18.04, the fastest ever wheelchair marathon.

Fearnley lost precious time to the leaders in the opening downhill sections of the course and, despite his best efforts, could not breach the gap to the leaders.

"It's always a tough start here for me as one of the lighter athletes, and I just couldn't do enough to stick with Marcel in the first 5km,” Fearnley said.

"I hate missing a podium but am happy with my push. I managed to pull about 30 seconds back on the leaders in the middle section of the race, which shows I'm in good nick."

"Full credit to Marcel and Ernst [runner-up Ernst van Dyk] for their push today. To go sub one-hour 20 minutes is really moving."

The elite wheelchair racers in Boston will now travel to the United Kingdom for next week's London Marathon, where Hug will be attempting to defend his 2016 crown.

"Last year Marcel cleaned up everywhere, so there'll be a few of us on the start line next week trying to make sure that doesn't happen this year," Fearnley said.

"I've had a couple of wins in London before and got close last year, so I know what it's about and will give it a good crack."

Fearnley is the London course record holder and a two-time winner (2009, 2013). In 2016, he finished runner-up behind Hug.