More than 500,000 people compete in a marathon in the United States every year. This year, one competitor proved to be Maryland’s fastest runner.
The Baltimore Sun reports that Baltimore resident Graham Peck, 25, ran in the Boston Marathon on April 20th and, in doing so, was the fastest Maryland resident in the event. With a finishing time of 2:26:09, Peck came in 45th place overall and 40th in the men’s division. The first Maryland woman to finish, Alex Wang, 23, was the 43rd female overall with a finishing time of 2:50:52.
Wang also happened to win the women’s division of the Baltimore Marathon last year with a time of 2:58:41.
This was Peck’s second Boston Marathon. Last year, he had a finishing time of 2:26:36 — just 27 seconds above his time this year.
“The first 16 miles in 2014, I was right at 5:30 a mile and…I was thinking, ‘that’s very fast for me, I might get into trouble,'” Peck said. “This year, I was kind of clicking off the same thing but I knew I felt comfortable doing it and I knew this was in my wheel house.”
Peck admitted to having “a huge grin” on his face after he surpassed the pack of eight runners he ran with during the first 16 miles of the marathon. Friends who were cheering him from the sidelines on mile 18 said he looked “great.”
Peck’s accomplishment is even more impressive, considering that he suffered an injury to his femur last fall. After completing the USA Marathon Championships in Minnesota on October 5th, Peck was forced to stop training. He didn’t start running again until Christmas Day.
Despite his injury, Peck never intended to skip the Boston Marathon. He claims that outside of the London Marathon, Boston is the only spring marathon he’s interested in.
“I had such a good time at Boston when I did it in 2014,” Peck said. “There were just so many people to run with there. I don’t know what other spring marathon you would do.”