Boston Marathon 2018 winners: Desiree Linden, Yuki Kawauchi prevail

Racers braved miserable conditions on the 26.2-mile route from Hopkinton to Boylston Street.

It wasn't an ideal day for a run through the streets of Boston, but Desiree Linden wouldn't trade her experience Monday for anything in her lengthy career.

Linden cruised down Boylston Street all alone in a chilly downpour, becoming the first American woman to win the Boston Marathon in 33 years as she claimed her first major title in 2 hours, 39 minutes, 54 seconds.

Minutes later, Yuki Kawauchi of Japan did the same, storming past defending champion Geoffrey Kirui late for his first major marathon win in 2:15:58. American Shadrack Biwott was third, nearly four minutes back.

Just under 30,000 runners set off from Hopkinton in miserable conditions, braving temperatures in the 40s and rain that never let up. The forecast was sufficiently dire that the Red Sox called off their traditional Patriots Day morning game at Fenway Park a day earlier.

Linden, 34, has had success in Boston before, finishing second in 2011 and fourth in 2015 and '17, but Monday's finish was historic as she became the first American woman to win since Lisa Larsen Weidenbach in 1985.

Linden was part of the lead pack for the bulk of Monday's race, hanging 20 to 30 seconds behind leader Mamitu Daska of Ethiopia before catching her around the 22-mile mark along with Gladys Chesir of Kenya. But the two-time U.S. Olympian kept the pedal down and quickly separated herself from Chesir.

She ended up winning by more than four minutes, with countrywoman Sarah Sellers (2:44:04) and Krista Duchene of Canada (2:44:20) rounding out the women's podium.

On the men's side, Kawauchi went out of the gate strong and led at the 5-kilometer mark but later faded behind Kirui and trailed by 91 seconds at the 35K mark. But he closed the gap and ran down Kirui in the final miles. The 31-year-old is known for his prolific marathon schedule and had won numerous races before, mostly in Asia, but this was his first win at one of the sport's marquee races. He is the first Japanese winner since Toshihiko Seko in 1987.

Earlier Monday, the push-rim wheelchair races saw two perennial favorites prevail. Marcel Hug won the men's race for the fourth consecutive year, while Tatyana McFadden bounced back from last year's stunning fourth-place finish to win her fifth overall Boston title.