Andrew Blankley had never ran in a race quite as big as the Boston Marathon before he participated in the world-renowned event on April 17.
“Hearing the crowds and high-fiving kids throughout the race was all new,” he said. “That all hits differently, and I’m glad to have been a part of that.”
The Gilroy native well exceeded his goal, finishing with a time of 2:38:36 in the 26.2-mile race that featured nearly 30,000 athletes from more than 100 countries.
Blankley, 26, said he qualified for the Boston Marathon with a time of 2:58:08, and set a goal of finishing at two hours and 50 minutes.
“While I think there’s still room for improvement, I’m extremely happy with that outing,” he said.
Blankley’s training began about a year ago, when he prepared to run in the Beantown Marathon in September to qualify for the Boston Marathon. Training specifically for Boston began soon after.
“Crossing the finish line, I was coming to terms with how much my personal record was improving,” he said of his thoughts as he was running in the Boston Marathon. “Little of what I was thinking about actually had to do with finishing the Boston Marathon, and had more to do with finishing a marathon far better than what I was originally targeting.”
Blankley plans to throw his hat in the ring for the 2024 London Marathon lottery. If his name doesn’t get picked, he said he plans to run in Boston again next year.
“While there’s also no guarantee that I’ll make Boston, I think my chances are better next year than the previous,” he said.
Other local participants in the Boston Marathon included Chuong Ma and Gloria Wahl, both of Gilroy, finishing with times of 3:20:23 and 3:47:11, respectively.