Meb Keflezighi becomes oldest U.S. Olympic distance runner
LOS ANGELES – Mebrahtom Keflezighi, known to all as Meb, will be the oldest U.S. Olympic runner in history when he toes the starting line of the men’s marathon in Rio de Janeiro on Aug. 21. Keflezighi secured his place on the U.S. Olympic team with a 2:12:21 finish for second place at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in Los Angeles on Saturday and will turn 41 on May 5.
In his marathon debut, Olympic silver medalist Galen Rupp won the race in 2:11:12. BYU graduate Jared Ward finished behind Keflezighi to qualify for his first Olympic team.
The Rio Games will be the fourth of Keflezighi’s career and he looks to add another medal to his silver from 2004 marathon in Athens.
In the last few years, several opportunities have been presented for Father Time to kick down Keflezighi but on Saturday Meb outran him once again.
History was made four years ago as Keflezighi became the oldest U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials champion at 36 with his 2:09.08 victory in Houston. He went on to finish fourth in the Olympic race in London.
After injuries and setbacks, Keflezighi roared back into the spotlight with a victory at the 2014 Boston Marathon, the first by an American at the race since 1983.
In his four most recent marathons, Keflezighi has been the first or second American across the finish line. The focus now shifts to racing East African medal contenders for another chance at the podium.