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U.S. Runner Molly Seidel, in only her third marathon, wins Olympic bronze

Photo By Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile via Getty Images

Molly Seidel, the 27-year-old American, had only run two marathons before arriving to compete at the Tokyo Olympics. But on Friday night, Seidel pulled off a historic upset and is leaving Japan with a bronze medal.

Seidel’s bronze makes her only the third American woman to medal in the Olympic marathon ever — which includes storied distance runners Deena Kastor and Joan Benoit Samuelson.

Kenya’s Peres Jepchirchir took gold in 2:27:20, while world record holder Brigid Kosgei won the silver in 2:27:36. Siedel was close behind and let out a well-deserved scream as she crossed the line in 2:27:46 to round out the Olympic podium.

Seidel finished second at the U.S. Olympic trials in February 2020 in her first-ever competitive marathon, behind her teammate Aliphine Tuliamuk, who dropped out of the Olympic race because of an injury.

In a post-race interview, Seidel was overcome with a mix of exhaustion and emotion after seeing her family celebrate.

“I’m so tired,” said Seidel. “Please, please drink a beer for me!”

Following the marathon, several legendary distance runners and fellow Olympians sent their congratulations to Seidel on social media.