FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
U.S. Men's Olympic Marathon Team-Led By Meb Keflezighi-to Headline
2012 ING New York City Marathon Field on November 4
U.S. Olympian Abdi Abdirahman Announced for Race, and American Distance
Dynamos Jason Hartmann and Brett Gotcher Will Make
ING New York City Marathon Debuts
American Wheelchair Field to Feature Veterans
Krige Schabort, Adam Bleakney, and Josh George
New $100,000 Prize Purse Introduced for American Runners
New York, August 29, 2012-Meb Keflezighi, who finished fourth (and first
American) in the 2012 Olympic Marathon; his teammate in London and
four-time U.S. Olympian Abdi Abdirahman; and two other top American
marathoners, Jason Hartmann and Brett Gotcher, will run the 2012 ING New
York City Marathon on Sunday, November 4, it was announced today by New
York Road Runners president and CEO Mary Wittenberg.
Previously announced runners for the race include two-time Olympian Ryan
Hall of the USA and Kim Smith of New Zealand.
ING New York City Marathon veterans Krige Schabort, Adam Bleakney, and Josh
George highlight a stacked American men's wheelchair field.
Other top U.S. male contenders include Nick Arciniaga, Scott Bauhs, Andrew
Carlson, and Ryan Vail.
The Marathon will be televised live nationally on ESPN2 and ESPN3 from
9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. ET/6:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. PT. Locally, New Yorkers
can watch the race on WABC-TV and 7online.com from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
The powerhouse pack of Americans will be chasing the newly introduced
$100,000 prize purse for U.S. citizens. The purse goes to the top five
American finishers and is equal for men and women: $20,000, $15,000,
$10,000, $3,500, and $1,500. Prize money in the Open Division and NYRR
Member Division remains the same, giving the Marathon a total prize purse
"It's a good day when we are announcing the equivalent of the USA Men's
Dream Team in Marathon running," said Wittenberg. "The field this year is
larger-than-life, led by perennial contender Meb Kefezighi and his 2012
Olympic marathon teammates Abdi Abdirahman and Ryan Hall. Two of America's
best distance runners- Jason Hartmann and Brett Gotcher-add to the
incredible lineup, and we can't wait to see what they can do in their NYC
Keflezighi, 37, of Mammoth Lakes, CA, will be a frontrunner not only in
this year's race, but next year's as well. The three-time Olympian signed a
two-year contract to compete in the ING New York City Marathon.
Keflezighi's fourth-place finish in the 2012 London Olympic Marathon was
only the second time that the United States has placed a man in the top
five since Frank Shorter earned silver in 1976-the other being Keflezighi's
own silver-medal performance in the 2004 Athens Games. After winning the
U.S. Marathon Trials earlier this year, he was the top American in the 2011
NYC Half, placing 13th in 1:01:41. In 2009, he became the first American
since Alberto Salazar in 1982 to win the New York City Marathon. He has
finished in the top 10 in the ING New York City Marathon a total of six
times, most recently with a sixth-place finish in 2011. Keflezighi is also
a three-time USA cross country champion (2001, 2002, 2009) and has won more
than 20 USA titles in his career.
"I'm excited to celebrate the 10th anniversary of my debut in the marathon
by running the 2012 ING New York City Marathon," said Keflezighi. "By this
November, I will have run eight of the last 10 NYC Marathons. I'm thankful
for not only winning the race in 2009, but also finishing in the top 10 in
all but one. I would like to thank NYRR for introducing me to the marathon
and supporting me every step of the way, including my 2004 Olympic silver
medal, through injuries, and podium finishes in WMM races."
Abdirahman, 35, of Tucson, AZ, became a four-time Olympian by finishing
third in the U.S. Marathon Trials in January 2012. He is also a four-time
USA 10,000-meter champion (2001, 2005, 2007, 2008). Abdirahman ran the 2007
NYC Half in 1:00:29, which is currently the fourth-fastest half-marathon
ever run by an American. He finished second behind Haile Gebrselassie's
course record. He also finished fifth in 2:11:24 at the 2005 ING New York
Hartmann, 31, of Boulder, CO, was the top American finisher in the 2012
Boston Marathon. His fourth-place finish earned him his first-ever points
on the World Marathon Majors leaderboard. Hartmann has a half-marathon
personal best of 1:03:07, set in the USA Championships in Houston in 2006,
and a marathon best of 2:11:06 from the Bank of America Chicago Marathon in
2010. He also won the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon in 2009. Although he
has never run the ING New York City Marathon, he was 10th in the 2008
Olympic Trials in Central Park and finished third when NYRR hosted the USA
8K Championships in 2008.
"I'm excited for the morning of November 4," said Hartmann. "Everyone
dreams of running the ING New York City Marathon-it's a bucket-list race.
Even though I was fourth overall and the top American at the 2012 Boston
Marathon, part of me still wants redemption after my performance at the
2012 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials. I have more to prove, and whenever I
retire from this sport, I want to be able to say that I left my mark on all
three major marathons on U.S. soil-Chicago, Boston and New York."
Gotcher, 28, of Flagstaff, AZ, won his first USA Championship (20K) in
2009. Several months later, he made his marathon debut at the Chevron
Houston Marathon, finishing seventh with a time of 2:10:36-the
fourth-fastest debut in U.S. history, and the third-fastest time by an
American that year. At the U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon in January, Gotcher
finished fifth in a time of 2:11:06, and he became the Team USA alternate
for the Olympic marathon after fourth-place finisher Dathan Ritzenhein made
the team at 10,000 meters. This will be the first ING New York City
Marathon for Gotcher, who has decided to train for the race at sea level in
his hometown of Watsonville, CA (near Santa Cruz).
"In 2009, I was lucky enough to ride in the lead car at the ING New York
City Marathon when Meb had his historic win," said Gotcher. "From that
moment on, I was sold. To finally be able to toe the line on the biggest
marathon stage is a thrill, and truly an honor."
In reviewing the field for the men's wheelchair race, Bob Laufer,
coordinator for the race, said, "It looks like we will have the largest
contingent of American men in the field this year. No American man has won
the division title since its inception in 2000. Krige Schabort was the
winner twice while competing for South Africa and is now a U.S. citizen.
Perhaps this is the year an American will end up on the top of the podium."
Bleakney, 37, of Savoy, IL, is a longtime racer and also the head coach of
the prestigious wheelchair track and field and road-racing team at the
University of Illinois-the most successful program in the country. He
finished 11th in the 2011 ING New York City Marathon and 14th in 2010.
Bleakney broke the American record for the all-conditions wheelchair
marathon with his sixth-place 1:26:03 in the 2011 Boston Marathon.
George, 28, of Fairfax, VA, placed seventh in the 2011 ING New York City
Marathon and 13th in 2010. He won the Bank of America Chicago Marathon in
2003, 2004, and 2006, and he finished third in 2011. George set world
records at 100, 400, and 800 meters before age 25 and competed in seven
track and field events at the 2008 Beijing Paralympics. He's set to compete
in this year's Paralympics in London.
Schabort, 49, of Cedartown, GA, is one of the winningest athletes in
history. He's notched victories in Cleveland, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Detroit,
New York City (2002 and 2003), and Honolulu (an astounding seven times).
Schabort was on the South African Paralympic Team in 1992, 1996, 2000, and
2004; he took the bronze medal in the 1992 Barcelona Paralympics Marathon
and improved to the silver eight years later in Sydney. This will be his
twelfth consecutive New York City Marathon.
Other top contenders in the U.S. men's field:
·Nick Arciniaga, 29, of Flagstaff, AZ, has a marathon personal
best of 2:11:30, which he set in finishing second in the Chevron Houston
Marathon in 2011. He was eighth in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in January.
His best race to date in New York was his eighth-place finish at the 2009
ING New York City Marathon.
·Scott Bauhs, 26, of Mammoth Lakes, CA, is a three-time NCAA
Division II champion, with titles in the 10,000 meters (2007), 5000 meters
(2008), and cross country (2008). He finished third at the 2011 USA Outdoor
Championships at 10,000 meters and competed at that distance at last
summer's World Championships in Daegu, South Korea. He ran a half-marathon
personal best of 1:01:30 at the 2012 Houston Marathon, placing third
overall. He also ran the 2012 NYC Half in a time of 1:02:44. This will be
his ING New York City Marathon debut.
·Andrew Carlson, 30, of Minneapolis, MN, specializes in long road
races and has won two USA titles. He has represented Team USA five times in
international competition. He ran his first marathon at the 2012 U.S.
Olympic Trials in January, overcoming a bad patch midway through the race
to finish an impressive sixth, the top-finishing debutant in the field.
·Ryan Vail, 26, of Portland, OR, had a 2:12:43 marathon debut at
the U.S. Olympic Trials in January and a sixth-place finish at the U.S.
Trials 10,000m in June.
About the ING New York City Marathon
NYRR's premier event, the ING New York City Marathon is the most loved and
most inclusive marathon in the world, attracting elite athletes and
recreational runners alike for the challenge and thrill of a lifetime. The
race has grown tremendously since it began in 1970 with just 127 runners
racing four laps of Central Park. Now, more than 47,000 participants from
all over the globe flock to New York City every November for an
adrenaline-filled road tour of all five boroughs, starting on Staten Island
at the foot of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge and ending in Central Park.
Some run for prize money or bragging rights, others for charity or their
personal best. All are cheered on by more than two million live spectators
and a TV audience of 330 million.