FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
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The 2006 Lasalle Bank Chicago Marathon
Welcomes Three Additional Elite Athletes to Field
CHICAGO (September 11, 2006) - The 2006 LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon today
announced the addition of Robert K. Cheruiyot (KEN), Benjamin Maiyo (KEN)
and Hiromi Ominami (JPN) to its elite athlete field. The world-class
competitors will compete for a portion of the Race's $650,000 prize purse,
the largest available in the sport, at its 29th running on Sunday, Oct. 22.
"We are extremely pleased that Robert Cheruiyot, Felix Limo and Ben Maiyo
have all decided to compete in The 2006 LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon,"
said Executive Race Director Carey Pinkowski. "When we initially organized
the World Marathon Majors series there was concern that the top athletes
would avoid head-to-head competition in the interest of earning points. The
fact that the three current point leaders are going to face each other here
confirms the strength of the series and continues the tradition of bringing
the world's greatest talents to Chicago."
Cheruiyot, 27, most recently won the Boston Marathon on April 17, setting a
new course record with a finish time of 2:07:14. The victory marked the
second Boston win for the Kenyan following his 2003 victory in 2:10:11.
Cheruiyot is currently tied with fellow Kenyan Felix Limo for first place
on the World Marathon Majors leader board. With Limo also competing in
Chicago on Oct. 22, a win for either athlete would mark a clear cut leader
for the series as it heads into 2007.
Maiyo, 27, placed second behind Cheruiyot at Boston this spring with a
finish time of 2:08:21, but set his personal record (2:07:09) with a
second-place finish at last year's LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon. Currently
tied for third with Martin Lel (KEN) on the World Marathon Majors leader
board, Maiyo has placed second in his last three marathon competitions
finishing the 2005 Los Angeles Marathon in 2:09:45.
"In winning The LaSalle Bank Chicago Distance Classic half marathon in
August, Hiromi Ominami provided herself with a great warm-up to our
Marathon. Since familiarizing herself with parts of our course, she has
continued to prepare herself well to compete against a very strong field of
women," said Pinkowski.
Joining the women's field, Ominami, 30, will make her LaSalle Bank Chicago
Marathon debut and look to post her first World Marathon Majors win. In
2004 she took second in the real,- BERLIN MARTAHON with a personal best of
2:23:26 and in January she recorded her first marathon championship at the
ING Miami Marathon (2:34:09). Ominami won The LaSalle Bank Chicago Distance
Classic half marathon in August with a finish time of 1:11:56.
Other athletes in the Oct. 22 field are Felix Limo (KEN), Daniel Njenga
(KEN), Constantina Tomescu-Dita (ROM), Galina Bogomolova (RUS), Ludmilla
Petrova (RUS) and Benita Johnson (AUS).
The 29th running of The LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon will take place on
Sunday, Oct. 22, beginning and ending in Chicago's historic Grant Park. The
Race will feature 40,000 registrants and expects more than 1.5 million
spectators along its course. For more information, visit the Race website,