For the first time in 21 years, a Connecticut man won the Eversource Hartford Marathon and Half Marathon on Saturday.
On Saturday morning, thousands of runners hit the pavement for the Eversource Hartford Marathon, Half Marathon and 5K. The races began at 8 a.m. in from of the Capitol building in Hartford.
The winner of the Eversource Hartford Marathon was Jonas Hampton, of New Britain. Hampton's unofficial result was 2:15:56.
“I always wanted to win this race, the half or the full. And I'm just happy I was able to pull it off today,” Hampton, who is a 2011 University of Hartford graduate and grew up in Pennsylvania, said. “Great crowd, this is great. I love this place."
According to race organizers, Hampton, who wore bib #19, is the first local to win the race in 21 years. The last Connecticut resident to win the marathon was Alex Magoun in 1994.
Saturday was the first time that Hampton ever read a full marathon. He said he previously did half marathons including at least one last year.
Erica Jesseman of Maine was the first female to cross the marathon finish line, wearing bib #2. Jesseman's unofficial result was 2:41:41. This is the third time she has won the female title for the marathon in Hartford.
Runners from all over New England and beyond ran the course through downtown Hartford, East Hartford, West Hartford and South Windsor.
For the half marathon, Harbert Okuti finished the race in 1:05:30.
In addition, hundreds of runners participated in the 5K race, which began at the intersection of Washington and Buckingham streets.
The winner of the 5K race for the men was Brian Biekert. of North Stonington, who finished in 15:02 minutes.
Maggie Callahan from Colorado finished the 5K in 17:26 minutes.
Plus, children from all across Connecticut ran the FitKids race on the east side of Bushnell Park starting at 9:30 a.m.
Many spectators enjoyed the nearly flawless weather to see the runners especially Hampton.
“I’ve never ever witnessed a marathon and to see Jonas do it, it was exciting,” spectator Madelyn Hartfield-Vana said.
“Last year, it was definitely cold, really wet, wet and cold,” Hampton said. “This year almost perfect.”
For more coverage of the Eversource Hartford Marathon, click here.
Several roads were closed in Hartford and the surrounding towns as the runners mad their way through the course. All closures were in effect from about 7:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Saturday.
Those looking to get into downtown to watch the race are advised to take public transportation if possible. However, there will be some detours and route changes for CT Transit during the race as well.
A full list of the road closures can be found here.
Copyright 2015 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.