Some Winnipeg runners said this year's Boston marathon stood out as their best race ever.

Kevin Donnelly ran his fourth Boston marathon Monday.

"It wasn't a sombre occasion — it was really an exciting thing to be a part of,” said Donnelly.

There was an elevated police presence on site for this year’s event in the wake of the 2013 bombing tragedy.

Donnelly witnessed the chaos unfold first hand at last year's Boston Marathon. He was invited to take part in this year's event, after he wrote the Boston Athletic Association about how profoundly affected he was by the bombing.

Donnelly said he'd never seen such heavy security, but that didn't put a damper on this year's race.

“You know, the anticipation; you go to the expo and you get your race number and it was sort of all the usual good parts of this marathon.”

Donnelly was there with a dozen Winnipeg runners, all but one of which were competing.