TWIN CITIES MARATHON News Release
Contact: Angela Lindsay-Johnson
(952-925-3500, ext. 13)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TCM 2000: THE ELITE FIELD
Minneapolis, Minn.— After a run-in with malaria slowed his pace this past
year, Andrew Musuva, the three-time defending champion from Kenya, looks to
return to his winning ways at this year's Twin Cities Marathon (TCM).
"Andrew will face very strong competition this year," said Paul Sackett, TCM
runner recruiting. "Our field includes a dozen athletes with recent
performances that match or better Andrew's winning time in 1999."
Six of the top seven 1999 TCM finishers return, including: Musuva (1st),
Elly Rono (3rd), Daniel Kihara (4th), Joshua Kipkemboi (5th), Andrey
Kuznetsov (6th) and Gideon Mutisya (7th). Kuznetsov is Russian; the rest are
Kenyan. Also in the field will be former TCM champion Pablo Sierra, Spain,
who ran a 2:11:35 in 1994.
The women's TCM 1998 champion, Zinaida Semenova, Russia, returns to head
the open field. She also faces strong competition.
"Zinaida had a breakthrough race in London in April, running 2:28", Sackett
said. "And, we have recruited a field that includes five other women with
Coming back to Minnesota is the reigning Grandma's Marathon 2000 champion,
Svetlana Tkach-Shepeleva, Moldavia, and 1998 Grandma's winner Yelena
Overall, the TCM 2000 field is shaping up as a truly international mix of
veterans and newcomers. Here are some of the interesting aspects, first with
regard to the men's field:
Speedsters Making Their First Twin Cities Appearance: Two runners with 2:11
finishes earlier this year will test the Twin Cities course: Sergey Fedotov,
Russia, and Stephen Ndungu, Kenya.
Top Master's Runners: Kipkemboi and Kuznetsov battled it out for the master
's (over age 40) title last year. This year they will be challenged by 2:10
Kenyan-marathoner Andrew Masai, who recently turned 40. Top U.S. masters
include: Steve Wilson, Gerald Donakowski, and Jim Hannon.
Marathon Debuts: Several talented runners at shorter distances are giving
the marathon a try, including U.S.-runner Peter Julian, Jacques van
Rensburg, South Africa; and Janko Bensa, Yugoslovia.
Bensa actually did finish a marathon earlier this year. He was hired to
"rabbit" (i.e., set a good pace for the first half) in Austin, TX. He
decided to keep going and won the race. Twin Cities will be his first
The American Contingent: Alfredo Vigueras, with the 4th fastest U.S. time
in 1999, is the top U.S. entrant. Joining him is David Marcus, one of
Minnesota's Olympic Marathon Trials qualifiers; Kurt Keiser, the top
Minnesota finisher at Grandma's; and debut-entrant Peter Julian.
In the women's field:
A Global Group of Speedsters: Five runners with 2:30 or better credentials
are in the field, including Semenova, Kenya's Lucia Subano, American Chris
McNamara, Russia's Ramilya Burangulova, and Czechoslovakia's Alena
Minnesota's Olympic Trials Qualifiers: Kelly Keeler leads the Minnesota
contingent, joined by many other Trials qualifiers, including Kari Beasley,
Staci Bennett, Margee Brown Becky Burdick, Bev Docherty, Jan Ettle, Nancy
Hylden, Kim Kauls, and Katie Koski.
Returning Veterans: Master's runners with a history of strong finishes at
TCM include Gillian Horovitz, Marie Boyd, Maria Trujillo de Rios, Jane
Welzel, and Claudia Kasen.