As will likely come as no surprise, this came as no surprise to me. 8) Hey, I knew Merga would win and when a race dawdles out like the women did then it is essentially up for grabs, it becomes roulette with no favorite. 😉 Then again, Hall and Goucher each in second place would have come as no surprise, either. Those who beat them were among several of each gender who have better résumés over the distance, they are those who have legitimately run to win or challenge for the win and place in major international marathons in the past. Half of the top competitors in each field could have off days and there would still be 2-3 with better marathon racing experience/ability. Third for each is great, no need to qualify or sugar-coat that at all. It could definitely be a stepping stone to second or even first in a fall marathon for either of them.