FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contacts: Richard Finn
New York Road Runners
Bob Kennedy, America's King of the Track, to Make
His Marathon Debut at the ING New York City Marathon 2004
NEW YORK - (May 12, 2004) - Ending years of speculation, Bob Kennedy,
two-time Olympian and the American record-holder at 3000 and 5000 meters,
has entered the ING New York City Marathon 2004 on Sunday, November 7. New
York Road Runners president and CEO Allan Steinfeld made the announcement
with Kennedy at a luncheon today at the New York Athletic Club.
Kennedy will bring years of world-class running experience to the line in
New York as he makes his long-anticipated marathon debut. He joins 2004
Olympic marathoner Deena Kastor as the second official entrant in this
year's professional athlete field.
"We are thrilled to welcome Bob to New York," said Steinfeld, also the ING
New York City Marathon race director. "We are eager to see him bring the
same guts, speed, and tenacity that have made him a success in cross
country and on the track to the marathon distance, and what better place to
do it than here in New York."
Twice an Olympian at 5000 meters, Kennedy finished 12th in Barcelona in
1992 and sixth in Atlanta in 1996. In the Atlanta race, he thrilled the
home crowd when he briefly took the lead midway. Kennedy was seventh in the
1995 World Championships at 5000 meters and sixth in the 1997 World
Kennedy, 33, of Indianapolis, Indiana, is arguably the best American
distance runner ever with American records of 7:30.84 for 3000 meters and
12:58.21 for 5000 meters. He is the only American to ever break 13 minutes
for 5000 meters, and has won the 5000 meter national title four times.
Though he has been plagued by injury and illness in recent years, he has
recently returned to form and is the reigning USA 10K road (28:35) and USA
Cross Country 12K (35:03) titlist.
Kennedy's marathon potential and the timing of his debut have been subjects
of intense interest and speculation. Today, flanked by Marcus O'Sullivan,
his longtime running adviser and the head cross country and track coach at
Villanova University, Kennedy announced that the time is finally right.
"I've thought about the marathon for some time, but have not felt as though
the time was right for this new challenge until now," said Kennedy. "It's
an honor to have the opportunity to take this next step in my athletic
career at one of the world's greatest footraces, the ING New York City
About the ING New York City Marathon
The ING New York City Marathon is the premier event of New York Road
Runners (NYRR). Inaugurated in 1970 with 127 entrants, the ING New York
City Marathon has grown into the world's premier road race, featuring
35,000 participants, more than two million spectators, a leading
professional field, and a guaranteed prize purse of more than $500,000.
Broadcast across the nation and in 125 countries worldwide, the 26.2-mile
footrace is the United States' most watched one-day sporting event. The ING
New York City Marathon joins the USA Men's 8K Championships and the Circle
of Friends New York Mini 10K as the cornerstones of the NYRR Professional
Racing Series and continues NYRR's tradition of bringing the very best
runners in the world to New York City. For more information visit:
About New York Road Runners Founded in 1958 with a membership of 47, New
York Road Runners (NYRR) is one of the world's foremost running
organizations. NYRR is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting
the sport of running and walking for health, recreation, and competition,
and provides full professional services related to all aspects of racing.
The organization has a full-time staff of more than 60 employees,
supplemented by a network of thousands of volunteers, serving 40,000
members from every U.S. state and more than 100 countries.