Irish News

Catholic runner wins Chicago Marathon after blessing

Galen Rupp crosses the line fi rst in the Chicago Marathon.

A devout Catholic runner blessed by the chaplain of the US House of Representatives before the Chicago Marathon went on to win the race.

Galen Rupp became the first American man to win the event since 2002 after Fr Patrick Conroy blessed him and his team member before the race.

Mr Rupp’s couch, Alberto Salazar, told Runner’s World that he knew Fr Patrick from Portland – where his club is based, and said the team get strength from their Catholic Faith.

Mr Salazar said about Fr Patrick: “He’s been here with us… doing daily Mass for us. He went out and blessed them before the race, those are the things that fuel both of them.”

Mr Rupp finished the marathon, which is over 40km long, in a time of 2.09:19. He thanked his wife who he said has “given up her life to support me and the kids”, adding: “You put so much into this one race – to see them (his family) at the finish line, to see them happy, it means the world to me.”