FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Twin Cities Host Top U.S. Distance Athletes This Weekend
INDIANAPOLIS - The top long distance runners in the U.S. will toe the line
this Sunday as the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon plays host to the
championships for the USA Women's Marathon, Masters Marathon and Men's 10
Abdi Abdirahman (Tucson, Ariz.) will return to the Twin Cities to seek his
fourth USA title at 10 miles but will face a strong field that includes
this year's USA 15 km champion Anthony Famiglietti (Knoxville, Tenn.).
Abdirahman and Famiglietti will face a field that includes Mohamed Trafeh
(Flagstaff, Ariz.) and local favorite Jason Lehmkuhle (Minneapolis, Minn.),
the second and third place finishers at the 2009 USA 20 km championships
last month in New Haven, Conn.
The championship will offer $25,000 in total prize money with the champion
Four-time Olympian Colleen De Reuck leads both the open and masters women's
field Sunday. The 2004 Olympic Trials Marathon Champion, De Reuck recently
won the USA Women's 20 km Championships and will lead a field of 30 women
who competed in the 2008 Olympic Trials Marathon, which includes 2009 USA
25 km champion Sally Meyerhoff (Eugene, Ore.) and local favorite Kristin
Nicolini (Minneapolis, Minn.).
The women's marathon will feature $72,500 in prize money with $25,000 going
to the champion.
For the 19th consecutive year, the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon hosts the
USA Masters Marathon Championship featuring the return of defending men's
champion Dennis Simonaitis (Draper, Utah). Simonaitis will face 2009 USA
Masters Half Marathon and 15 km champion Paul Aufdemberge (Redford, Mich.).
Racing De Reuck for the masters women's title will be defending champion
Susan Empey (Mercer Island, Wash.) and 2008 runner-up Meghan Arbogast
The USA Masters Marathon Championships will feature over $50,000 in prize
money with the overall men's and women's masters champions earning $7,500
Olympic Trials qualifying begins
The women's marathon championships will also be the first and only day in
2009 for women to qualify for the 2012 US Olympic Trials with a 2:46:00 or
better. The men's championships held here last year saw ten men take
advantage of the first opportunity to qualify for the 2012 Olympic Trials;
another 38 men have qualified during 2009. Lists of both men's and women's
2012 qualifiers will be maintained at www.usatf.org.