Former University runner places 12th in Boston Marathon

University of Minnesota alumnus Antonio Vega placed 12th in the Boston Marathon.

by Raghav Mehta

Three months of rigorous training paid off Monday for University of Minnesota alumnus Antonio Vega, who placed 12th in the Boston Marathon. Vega clocked in at 2 hours, 13 minutes and 47 seconds, averaging 5:06 per mile. Out of more than 20,000 participants, he was among three Minnesotans who placed in the top 25. The winner, Robert Cheruiyot of Kenya, finished the 26.2-mile course in 2:05:52, a course record. Before graduating from the University in 2007 with a degree in kinesiology, Vega was an All-American on the Gophers cross country team and received national recognition after winning the USA Half Marathon Championship in Houston earlier this year. While Vega had higher expectations for himself, he wasnâÄôt upset about the results. âÄúI was hoping for a little bit of a quicker time, but it was still a good day,âÄù Vega said. Vega ran as a member of Team USA Minnesota, a Twin Cities-based distance training group, along with his teammates Jason Lehmkuhle and Michelle Frey. Lehmkuhle came in ninth with a time of 2:12:24. Frey placed 23rd, clocking in at 2:42:38. Pat Goodwin, founder of Team USA Minnesota, said her organization had kept a close eye on Vega long before he ran for the University. âÄúHe always looked like he had a lot potential,âÄù Goodwin said. Goodwin said Vega not only stands out in terms of talent, but resilience as well. After joining Team USA Minnesota, Vega knocked his knee cap out of place while running on ice on Christmas Eve, but he continued to train using an underwater treadmill while rehabilitating. Vega will travel to China to participate in an international half-marathon competition as a member of the U.S. world team in October. The Boston Marathon takes place on the third Monday of April each year. It averages a total of 20,000 participants each year and is the worldâÄôs oldest annual marathon. When asked how he would celebrate, Vega said, âÄúIâÄôm going to be real lazy for the next two weeks and eat a lot of food.âÄù