FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Karen Kalan, Los Angeles Marathon
Laurence Cohen, TLC MediaWorks
Los Angeles Marathon Announces $23,000 Prize Purse
for Top U.S. and Californian Athletes
Race to also offer $1000 bonuses to 2008 Olympic Trials Qualifiers
LOS ANGELES - (March 2, 2006) - For the first time in its 21-year history,
the City of Los Angeles Marathon presented by Honda will be offering cash
prizes to the top three American and Californian men and women to cross the
finish line on Sunday, March 19. Included as part of the race's $417,600
guaranteed prize purse, U.S. and California runners will also be competing
for $18,000 and $5000, respectively, with the top three places per gender
sharing the prize money. U.S. and California runners will be eligible to
earn prize money in multiple categories. In addition, Marathon organizers
announced a bonus of $1000 for any American athletes who run under the 2008
Olympic Trials "A" qualifying times of 2:20:00 for men and 2:39:00 for
"By offering these cash incentives, we hope to bring more of America's top
runners to Los Angeles and to encourage them to run faster here on the way
to competing on a world level," said Los Angeles Marathon President Dr.
William A. Burke.
Currently the top American men are Chris Banks and Steve Moreno. Banks, who
lives in Alexandria, Virginia, placed 7th and set his marathon personal best
of 2:17:06 at the 2004 Twin Cities Marathon. He was the 1st American at the
2003 Pan Am Games Marathon in Santo Domingo and a three-time qualifier for
the NCAA Cross Country Championships while at Princeton University. Steve
Moreno, a high school teacher from Oakland, was 15th at the 2004 U.S.
Olympic Trials in 2:17:48, where he set his personal best.
For the women, Magdalena Lewy Boulet and Heather Hanscom lead the field.
Magdalena, the wife of Richie Boulet who will be competing in the Men's
Professional Field, is a former UC-Berkeley track All-American and a
volunteer coach for the Golden Bears Cross Country program. She was 5th at
the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials and has a marathon PR of 2:30:50 from that
race. Hanscom, from Alexandria, Virginia, also set her personal best of
2:31:53 at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in St. Louis.
In total, the Los Angeles Marathon will be offering $417,600 in prize money,
including a $100,000 bonus to the winner of the Banco Popular Challenge, an
innovation created by the event organizers in 2004. The Banco Popular
Challenge is an unprecedented male-versus-female race in which the women are
given a 'head start' based on statistics compiled from recent performances
by the competing professional runners. The winners in the male and female
division will also win a $35,000 first place prize plus a Honda Accord EX-V6
valued at $27,300, giving the winner of the Banco Popular Challenge the
largest guaranteed first place payout in the United States.
About the City of Los Angeles Marathon
The 21st running of the City of Los Angeles Marathon presented by Honda will
take place the weekend of March 17-19, with the run beginning at 8:15am
Sunday, March 19, 2006. The weekend's activities include the two-day Emerald
Nuts Quality of Life Expo taking place on March 17-18 at the Los Angeles
Convention Center, the Acura L.A. Bike Tour and the Emerald Nuts 5K
Run/Walk. Sponsors of the event include Acura, American Airlines, Banco
Popular, Emerald Premium Snacks, NBC 4, Saucony and Telemundo 52. The race
will be broadcast live on NBC 4 from 7:30am to 11:00am, on Telemundo 52 from
7:30am to 11:30am and on the worldwide web at NBC4.tv.
The Los Angeles Marathon is the largest marathon held in California, the
fourth largest in the country and the seventh largest in the world. It is
expected to draw more than 25,000 runners from 50 states and 100 countries
in 2006. In total, event day will include more than 45,000 participants for
the 26.2 mile run, the Acura L.A. Bike Tour and the Emerald Nuts 5K
Run/Walk. Visit the race website at: www.LAMarathon.com