ELLENSBURG, Wash. - An Ellensburg woman ran the Boston marathon with the likes of running legend Kathrine Switzer, the first woman to officially complete the race.
On Monday, Lauren Zeutenhorst joined Switzer, now 70, for the 50th anniversary of her monumental and, at the time, controversial run. Zeutenhorst ran with Team 261 Fearless, a group of 124 runners, including seven men, who raced alongside the veteran.
Zeutenhorst is a 2009 Selah graduate, former Boston College grad student and director of events at Central Washington University. She was near Switzer at the start of the 121st annual Boston Marathon in a crowd of thousands.
The two met at a pre-race dinner for the 2016 Yakima River Canyon Marathon where Switzer was speaking. The two kept in touch and weeks later, Zeutenhorst was given the opportunity to join Switzer’s Boston team to raise money for charity that empowers women through running, the Yakima Herald-Republic reports.
Despite temperatures hitting the upper 70s that day, the Ellensburg woman’s goal of 4 hours 10 minutes looked very attainable at the halfway point. But at mile 14, she said said her close friend was struggling with the heat. She decided to walk much of the race with him and finished at 4:57:20, beating her record from last year by 15 minutes.
Switzer finished the race at 4:44:31, just 24 minutse slower than her time when she was a 20-year-old, according to ABC News.
The team raised more than $900,000 ahead of the race and went to a number of events with Switzer over the weekend, including a celebration on Monday night.
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