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Red Sox icon David Ortiz named 2023 Boston Marathon Grand Marshal

The three-time World Series champion, Ortiz, will kick off the race in Hopkinton

David Ortiz Photo by: Parker Harrington, W/C

On Friday, the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) announced that MLB Hall of Famer and Boston Red Sox legend David Ortiz will serve as Grand Marshal for the 127th Boston Marathon on Monday, April 17.

The three-time World Series champion will serve as the 2023 Grand Marshal, kicking off the race with a speech in Hopkinton, before the 30,000+ entrants from 122 countries make the 42.2km journey down to Boylston Street. Ortiz will ride in the lead vehicle, and will reach the finish shortly before race champions break the finish tape out front of the Boston Public Library.

This year’s race marks the 10th anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing. In the wake of the 2013 bombing, Ortiz gave a memorable speech to Bostonians at Fenway Park before the Red Sox game. He took on the role of a leader on the Red Sox from 2003 to 2016, embodying the spirit of the city on and off the field.   

Ortiz, 47, won’t be the only former Boston sporting legend taking part in this year’s race; former Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara, who led the Bruins to a 2011 Stanley Cup, will be running the marathon for The Hoyt Foundation. This will be Chara’s first marathon.

The 127th Boston Marathon has many storylines, but the most interesting one will be how the greatest marathoner in history, Eliud Kipchoge, fares in his Boston debut. The 38-year-old marathon world record holder is on a quest to win all six Abbott World Marathon Majors; he currently has four wins, missing only Boston and New York. (He is also a two-time Olympic gold medallist.)