FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Susan Reid, Elite Racing
Kim Dettwiller, Elite Racing
Return Champion Seeks Another Victory at Country Music Marathon™
Nashville, Tenn. (April 25, 2006) – The Country Music Marathon welcomes a
familiar face this year as 2003 champion Jomo Kororia of Kenya returns for
another attempt at the title on race day, Sun., April, 29. The seventh
annual race features elite men's and women's fields vying for a prize purse
that awards $17,500 or a 2006 Nissan automobile to the champion.
Kororia's competition includes runners familiar to the musical marathon
series. Entering with the fastest time in the field is countryman Philip
Tarus, course record holder and champion of the 1998 and 1999 Rock 'n' Roll
Marathon in San Diego, Calif. Tarus, 31, posted a 2:08:33 in his repeat
victory at the second musical marathon in '99. Right behind him is another
Kenyan, David Kirui, 34, who won the 2004 Los Angeles Marathon and enters
with a time of 2:08:53.
A strong contingent of South Americans, who are known for their stamina on
the hills, will challenge as will an up-and-coming trio of men from
Ethiopia. Twenty-six year old Feyisa Tusse (Ethiopia) has a personal best
of 2:14:12 and teammate Asnake Fekadu enters with a PR of 2:20:27.
The elite women's field features veteran runners who have performed well at
past Country Music Marathons. Russia's Tatiana Mironova, 36, finished third
last year and enters the '06 race with a best of 2:32:28. Countrywoman
Elena Orlova had a strong season in '05, finishing fifth here and winning
the California International Marathon. She has a PR of 2:34:16.
There are rising stars on the women's side as well, led by a pair of
Ethiopians. Dire Tune, 21, is coming off a fourth place finish at the 2004
Los Angeles Marathon and teammate Dirbe Hunde, 22, won the '05 Dubai
Marathon. Tune enters with a best of 2:30:48. Kenyan Anne Jelegat owns the
fastest time in the women's field at 2:29:23.
Country Music Marathon course records are 2:12:55 by Kenyan Luke Kibet in
the first year of the men's race, and 2:28:06 by Kirgizstan’s Irina
Bogacheva in the 2003 women's event. Race organizers are also offering a
$10,000 bonus to the first male finishing under 2:11:00 and an additional
$10,000 for breaking 2:10:00. The same applies to the first female
finishing under 2:29:00 with the additional bonus awarded if 2:28:00 is
Following the elites will be nearly 24,000 participants running and walking
along the scenic marathon and half marathon courses lined with more than 50
live bands, 25 spirited high school cheerleading squads, thousands of
volunteers and thousands of encouraging spectators. The courses start in
Centennial Park on West End Avenue, runs through Music Row, Belmont
University and Bicentennial mall. Participants will pass the State Capitol
Building and Shelby Park before finishing outside the Tennessee Titan’s
home, The Coliseum.
For more information on the Country Music Marathon & ½ Marathon visit
www.CMMarathon.com or call Elite Racing at 800/311-1255.