Former Boston Bruins defender Zdeno Chara dominated the race at the 2023 Boston Marathon even without his skates.
On Monday, Chara completed the 26.2-mile run in just 3:38:23, an amazing time for an amateur. The 46-year-old finished the race with an 8:20 mile pace and reached the halfway point in 1:49:40. On the back end of the race, he raced two miles under eight minutes, with his final mile coming in at just 7:21.
Why Zdeno Chara ran in the 127th Boston Marathon?
Chara ran to show his support to The Hoyt Foundation and The Thomas E. Smith Foundation, two charities that are dear to his heart.
Famous Boston Marathon runner Dick Hoyt established the Hoyt Foundation along with his cerebral palsy-suffering son, Rick. The Boston Athletic Association and the Boston Marathon have contributed to it for a very long time. The Hoyts directly inspired the Bruins to win the Stanley Cup in 2011, according to Chara.
Chara also endorsed the Thomas E. Smith Foundation, which provides assistance for people with paralysis and their families. Chara applauded Tom Smith’s nonprofit for its zeal and commitment to aiding others, calling him “one of the most resilient and inspiring stories.”
After wearing the No. 33 jersey for the Bruins for 14 seasons, Chara appropriately wore the “3333” bib for the race.
Brock Holt and Ryan Dempster, two former Red Sox players who each won a World Series while playing for Boston, also participated in the event on Monday. They each had bib numbers that matched the numbers on the back of their Red Sox shirts. Holt was wearing the “1212” bib, and Dempster was wearing the “4646.”
Chara admitted to Duke Castiglione of WCVB that the anniversary of the bombs was on his mind when he crossed the finish line. “What this city and the people showed, how they came together and supported each other at the time, it was incredibly motivational and inspiring for all of us,” Chara said. “Running 10 years later, I always had it in the back of my mind. I just tried to obviously give my best those last few miles. I was thinking of all the people who were affected, and all the families.”