Looking good in his CarbBoom Energy Gel Apple Cinnamon race kit, friend of Boom! and Boom Nutrition Sponsored Athlete Desta Morkama won the 2017 Marine Corps Marathon in Washington DC in a time of 2:25:14. A member of the Ethiopian Oromo minority group, Morkama came to Arlington last year to escape persecution and quickly established himself on the northern Virginia road racing scene. After recovering from an earlier quad injury, he picked up his training and racing in the last few months, including wins at the Annapolis 10 Miler and Parks Half Marathon, though he also won the Lower Potomac River Marathon in March and the Potomac River Run (May) and Abebe Bikila Day International Peace (September) marathons on the C&O Canal Towpath.
“I’m very excited about this,” Desta said. “I worked very hard to win this race.”
Despite his 2:13:48 marathon PR from 2013, Morkama often relies on his kick to wins races, but that wasn’t possible at Marine Corps, as confusion in the first mile threw much of the leading Marine Corps Marathon pack into chaos, but Desta eventually overcame a nearly-two-minute deficit, and up to an extra half mile, to win in 2:25:14 Throughout the race, his expression telegraphed the intensity of someone who knew the race wasn’t over before he crossed the finish line.
“I was way back,” Morkama said. “I had to push the whole race to catch up.”