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Rita Jeptoo takes second Boston title

Rita Jeptoo won in 2:26:23, more than four seconds off her career best. Shalane Flanagan was fourth. AP Photo/Charles Krupa

BOSTON -- Rita Jeptoo, the 2006 Boston Marathon champion who is experiencing a revival of her career after several years away from the top of the sport, won her second Boston Marathon title in 2:26:23 on Monday.

Jeptoo, 30, surged to the front just after Mile 23, leading a pack of three women past mid-race leader Ana Dulce Felix, who had launched a major surge and at one point held a 1:30 advantage over the chase pack.

Meseret Hailu, a young Ethiopian and the 2012 world half-marathon champion, was second in 2:26:56. Defending women's champion Sharon Cherop was third in 2:26:59.

American Shalane Flanagan, a Marblehead, Mass., native who was hoping to become the first American to win at Boston since 1985, finished fourth in 2:27:07. Training partner Kara Goucher was sixth.

Jeptoo got her first win in a major race since taking two years off after having a baby. She is the third straight Kenyan woman to win and 15th East African winner in the last 17 years.