(CNN) – An American woman and a Japanese man won the elite divisions in the Boston Marathon Monday, the first time runners from each country have taken the top spots in more than 30 years.
Desiree (Desi) Linden, a two-time Olympian, battled the rain and wind to win the 122nd running of the storied race. It’s also the first win of the 34-year-old’s career.
And Yuki Kawauchi of Japan came in first place in the men’s elite division, overtaking Geoffrey Kirui of Kenya in the final miles. American Shadrack Biwott was third.
In 2011, Linden finished second in the women’s division, just 2 seconds behind Caroline Kilel. She also was second at the US Olympic Marathon trials in 2012. Linden finished fourth in the Boston Marathon last year.
Earlier in the race, Linden temporarily took herself out of contention to help fellow American Shalane Flanagan. Flanagan dropped out of the lead pack to go to a portable toilet. Showing tremendous sportsmanship, Linden hung back to wait for Flanagan so they could both return to the lead pack together.
Before Linden, the last American woman to win the Boston Marathon was Lisa Rainsberger in 1985.
The last Japanese man to win the famous race was Toshihiko Seko in 1987. The last American man to win Boston was Meb Keflezighi, in 2014.