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Flanagan, Davila, Ritzenhein Lead Deep American Elite Team In 2014 Boston Marathon

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BOSTON (CBS) – Will this be the year that an American wins the Boston Marathon?

The deepest women’s and men’s teams in years were announced Tuesday by race sponsor John Hancock Financial.

American women have come closest to winning a title in recent years.

Desiree Davila Linden leads the 2014 team. In the 2011 Boston Marathon, she narrowly missed winning by two seconds, as she set a 2:22:38 American course record.

Marblehead native Shalane Flanagan, who finished fourth last year in Boston, will also return.

They’re joined by Amy Hastings, Serena Burla, and Adriana Nelson.

On the men’s side, Jason Hartmann will be back at the starting line in Hopkinton. He finished fourth in 2012 and 2013.

Meb Keflezighi, who placed fifth in Boston in 2010 and third in 2006, will be back in 2014 as well.

They’ll be joined by three-time Olympian Dathan Ritzenhein, the third fastest U.S. marathoner of all time, who will make his Boston debut this year. Ritzenhein is coached by 1982 Boston Marathon champion Alberto Salazar.

Brett Gotcher, Nick Arciniaga and Jeffrey Eggleston will also be part of the men’s American elite team.

“The group of U.S. runners which has committed to the 2014 Boston Marathon is exceptional,” Tom Grilk, B.A.A. Executive Director, said in a statement Tuesday. “The team reflects both principal sponsor John Hancock’s recruitment success in assembling the best available Americans, and the athletes’ desire to run Boston in what certainly will be a special year for the race and the City.”

The last American to win the Boston Marathon was Lisa Larsen Weidenbach in 1985.  Greg Meyer was the last American man to win the race, back in 1983.

Here is the 2014 American Elite Team and their best marathon times:

Women:

Runner Time and Race
Desiree Davila Linden 2:22:38 (Boston, 2011)
Shalane Flanagan 2:25:38 (Houston, 2012)
Amy Hastings 2:27:03 (Los Angeles, 2011)
Serena Burla 2:28:01 (Amsterdam, 2013)
Adriana Nelson 2:28:52 (London, 2008)

Men:

Runner Time and Race
Dathan Ritzenhein 2:07:47 (Chicago, 2012)
Meb Keflezighi 2:09:08 (Houston, 2012)
Brett Gotcher 2:10:36 (Houston, 2010)
Jason Hartmann 2:11:06 (Chicago 2010)
Nicholas Arciniaga 2:11:30 (Houston, 2011)
Jeffrey Eggleston 2:12:03 (Chicago, 2012)

Tune in to the 118th Boston Marathon on April 21 on WBZ-TV, the only station with start-to-finish coverage of the race!

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