FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: +44 7900 243460
BANKING ON THE MARATHON
Frankfurt, October 28, 12.00gmt
Frankfurt has the oldest city marathon in Germany – Sunday morning's race
will be the 24th - but in recent years, it has lagged behind Berlin, which
it predates by six months. But the city that would be the banking capital
of Europe is putting its money on the appropriately named EuroCity Marathon
as a means of garnering the same sort of publicity that the celebrated Book
Fair (latest edition two weeks ago) brings to Frankfurt.
Now in his third year as race director, Jo Schindler has already changed
the course to good effect, with a record of 2hr 09min 28sec last year. Boaz
Kimaiyo is back to defend his title and record, but faces a formidable
elder colleague, Ondoro Osoro, whose record of being the world’s fastest
marathon debutant – 2.06.54, in winning Chicago in 1998 – is matched only
by his determination to continue a comeback after being shot by robbers
four years ago. Osoro won the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon in 2.09.38 in San
Diego last year.
Osoro’s manager, Noel Stoddart reports that the veteran runner came as
close as any Kenyan does to predicting a good performance in Frankfurt.
When asked about his chances last week, Osoro replied, "We'll see in the
race." "That’s Kenyan code for expecting to do well," says Stoddart.
As with most big city marathons, it's difficult to see beyond a Kenyan
winner in the men's race, and Osoro's colleagues, Fred Mogaka, John Rono,
Simon Kasimili, and debutant, Eric Kiptoon are the likeliest challengers
for the €10,000 first prize. The flat course and expected cool weather –
12-14C - also make the €25,000 for a course record a distinct possibility.
Frankfurt has one of the most unusual finishes for a marathon, a red carpet
(literally) is laid from the street into the famous Messe, the city centre
There will be 10,000 runners from over 60 nations, and race director
Schindler says, "We aim for a mix of a good elite field, and a fast flat
course with a good service for all runners. We want to grow."
(further info: tel +44 7900 243460)