In an interview after the race, Linden said she wasn't feeling well, considered dropping out mid-race and chose to instead try to help Flanagan, a MA native who was vying for a Boston title. She said she was "in shock" that her podium finish earned her $75,000 in prize money, the AP reported.
Desiree Linden became the first American woman to win the Boston Marathon in 33 years Monday, ending a long US drought on a rain-soaked day. Nearly an hour into the race, fellow American runner Shalane Flanagan took a quick detour to use one of the restrooms set up just off the course. "I'm just very glad that I made it".
"She kind of nudged me and said, 'I'm going to hit the bathroom.' I was like, 'I'll kind of tuck in and try to bring you back to the group'".
Flanagan was even quoted to have said she wanted to win the 2018 Boston marathon "so badly" that she had to resort to reverse psychology in order to maintain focus.
Linden overtook Ethiopia's Mamitu Daska and Kenya's Gladys Chesir at Heartbreak Hill after the 32km mark and kept the lead from there to win in 2:39:54. "I have the utmost respect for who they are as athletes and as people".
Weather conditions were so bad the Boston Red Sox, who usually play a Major League Baseball home game on race day, postponed their Fenway Park contest for the first time since 1984. It was a display of sportsmanship that impressed many watching the race.
"For me, it was the best conditions possible", said Kawauchi.
Shalane Flanagan's detour to the port-a-potty.
"I could start to feel my arms getting heavy just from all the rain soaking in", she said.
The last time the United States boasted such an impressive feat was in 1985 when Lisa Larsen Weidenbach was the victor of the Boston race.
The race was undoubtedly one that Linden will never forget.
Canada's Krista Duchene was third, with a total of seven Americans in the women's top 10 and - for the second straight year - six in the men's.
At the beginning of her Boston Marathon race, Desiree Linden was not sure if she had enough to make it to the finish line. That was more than four minutes better than second-place finisher Sarah Sellers, one of seven Americans in the top 10, but the slowest time for a women's victor since 1978.
Yuki Kawauchi splashed through the pelting rain, temperatures in the mid-30s and wind that gusted as high as 32 miles per hour to win the men's race, passing defending champion Geoffrey Kirui in Kenmore Square to earn Japan's first Boston title since 1987 and the $150,000 first prize.