FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tokyo Marathon Joins World Marathon Majors
Tokyo Marathon Will be the Sixth Event in the Series,
Along with Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago, and New York City
New York, NY - The World Marathon Majors® (WMM) today announced the
addition of the Tokyo Marathon to the World Marathon Majors Series. The
seventh Tokyo Marathon, which will be held on February 24, 2013, will be
the first race in the 2013 - 2014 World Marathon Majors scoring period. The
Tokyo Marathon is the first World Marathon Majors event to be based in
"Tokyo is honored to join the World Marathon Majors," said Tad Hayano,
Tokyo Marathon Foundation Race Director. "As the first marathon from Asia,
we will continuously make an effort to expand the brand of the WMM in Asia.
Likewise, as the one of the World Marathon Majors, we believe that the
Tokyo Marathon can make an even more positive contribution to the world
marathon scene by working with our new partners."
Founded on January 23, 2006 by the Boston, Virgin London, BMW Berlin, Bank
of America Chicago, and ING New York City marathons, the World Marathon
Majors is a race series offering a $1 million prize purse to be split
equally between the top male and female marathoners in the world. In
addition to the six other races, the IAAF World Championships and Olympic
marathons also serve as scoring events in the years in which they are held.
Athletes earn points by placing among the top five in each race during a
two-year scoring period. The champions of the WMM will be the man and woman
who score the greatest number of points during the two-year scoring period.
In a joint statement from the World Marathon Majors Race Directors, Tom
Grilk, Executive Director of the Boston Athletic Association and Boston
Marathon, added, "We at World Marathon Majors are delighted to have Tokyo
join our group. The Japanese have a magnificent history and tradition in
the marathon, and the Japanese people have long embraced the marathon and
distance running in general. They are among the finest fans in the world
for our sport."
The inaugural Tokyo Marathon was held on February 18, 2007 and drew 95,044
applicants and 30,870 participants. Kenya's Daniel Njenga (2:09:45) and
Japan's Hitomi Niiya (2:31:01) were the race's first champions. Since 2007,
the Tokyo Marathon has grown to over 300,000 applicants and nearly 36,000
participants. In addition to serving as the first race of the 2013 - 2014
WMM scoring period, the 2013 Tokyo Marathon will double as the Japanese
men's national team trials for the 14th IAAF World Championships Marathon
in Moscow. Prior to the establishment of the Tokyo Marathon Foundation in
2007, the city of Tokyo hosted two separate marathon events for elite men
and women, dating back to 1980 and 1979, respectively.
Each of the World Marathon Majors races boasts an international elite field
for both men and women, has a mass participatory field completing the same
course as the elite runners, takes place in a major international market,
and is regarded as among the best in the industry.
About the Tokyo Marathon
Organized by the Tokyo Marathon Foundation and established in 2007, the
Tokyo Marathon hosts nearly 36,000 participants on a tour of Tokyo's iconic
tourist attractions. Through its theme, "The Day We Unite," the Tokyo
Marathon unites runners, volunteers, and spectators on race day. Following
the 2011 race, the Tokyo Marathon instituted "Tsunagu," a companion charity
program for the Tokyo Marathon. Donations go to charitable activities in
various fields according to the concept of "Tsunagu," or solidarity.
Registration for the 2013 Tokyo Marathon, which closed on August 31, drew
over 300,000 applicants.
About World Marathon Majors (WMM)
Established in 2006, the World Marathon Majors is a race series comprised
of the Tokyo, Boston, Virgin London, BMW Berlin, Bank of America Chicago,
and ING New York City marathons. In the years in which they are run, WMM
also includes the IAAF World Championships and Olympic marathons. At the
conclusion of a two-year cycle, WMM offers a $1 million prize purse to be
split equally between the top male and female marathoners in the world. The
inaugural 2006 - 2007 series launched at the 110th Boston Marathon on April
17, 2006 and concluded on November 4, 2007 at the ING New York City
Marathon. The 2013 - 2014 series begins with the Tokyo Marathon on February
24, 2013 and will conclude on November 2, 2014 at the ING New York City