Runners begin the 2012 L.A. Marathon at Dodger Stadium. (Genaro Molina / Los Angeles…)
The forecasts called for a strong chance of rain, but so far it hasn't appeared.
Instead, the sun is out for the 27th annual L.A. Marathon that began Sunday morning.
The elite women's runners started the 26.2-mile run at Dodger Stadium just after 7 a.m. and Misikir Mekonnin of Ethiopia took an early lead. But the women's race has so far been dominated by 20-year-old Fatuma Sado of Ethopia. She took the lead in the seventh mile and has started to pull away, separating herself in the 12th mile by opening up a 25-second lead over the runner in second place, Ethopia's Belainesh Gebre.
Sado is on pace to break the course record of 2 hours, 25 minutes, 10 seconds, set by Lidiya Grigoryeva of Russia in 2006.
The men began just short of 7:30 a.m. and Elias Kemboi, a top contender from Kenya, held a lead after the first two miles. But the surprise on the men's side has been Teodoro Vega from Mexico. Vega took the lead in the fourth mile and still has it entering the 14th mile, past the halfway mark.
What's surprising about Vega's lead is that his personal best marathon time is 2 hours, 21 minutes, 11 seconds, far short of the personal best times posted by the elite Kenyan and Ethopian runners.