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International Distance-Running Greats to Challenge Defending Champions at 2014 TCS New York City Marathon

September 10, 2014

Marathon world record-holder Kipsang will headline a stacked men’s field featuring three past champions, including previously announced two-time defending champion and course record-holder, Geoffrey Mutai

Bronx resident and two-time New York City Marathon Runner-Up Deba will lead a star-studded women’s field against an unprecedented four former New York City Marathon champions, including previously announced defending champion Priscah Jeptoo

New York, September 10, 2014—An extraordinary contingent of decorated marathoners from around the world, featuring world record-holder Wilson Kipsang of Kenya and Bronx resident and two-time New York City Marathon runner-up Buzunesh Deba of Ethiopia, will compete in a race for the ages at the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon on Sunday, November 2, 2014, it was announced today by Mary Wittenberg, president and CEO of New York Road Runners.

Kipsang, in his first New York City Marathon appearance, will line up against three former New York City Marathon champions—previously announced course record-holder Geoffrey Mutai of Kenya (2011, 2013), Gebre Gebremariam of Ethiopia (2010), and previously announced American Meb Keflezighi (2009). Deba will  defend her home turf against four former New York City Marathon champions—Priscah Jeptoo of Kenya (2013), Firehiwot Dado of Ethiopia (2011), Edna Kiplagat of Kenya (2010), and Jelena Prokopcuka of Latvia (2005, 2006). 

“This year’s international field of past New York City Marathon champions, record-setters, and global championship medalists echoes the aspirational spirit of the TCS New York City Marathon—bringing the world together to celebrate the diversity of New York City and strive to achieve something bigger than ourselves—a global running community,” said Wittenberg. “We’re proud to welcome Wilson, a world-renowned marathon icon; Buzunesh, the ultimate running ambassador for our City; and an unparalleled field to “get their New York on” with every stride they take through the City’s five boroughs, as they lead runners from Staten Island to Central Park.”

Kipsang, 32, of Kenya, arguably the world’s best marathoner, rewrote history when he set the current marathon world record of 2:03:23 to win the 2013 BMW Berlin Marathon. The 2012 London Olympic Marathon bronze medalist has run under 2:05 five times, the most in history. He won his second Virgin Money London Marathon in 2014 in a course record of 2:04:29 after narrowly missing the record in the 2012 event by four seconds with his time of 2:04:44. He is the two-time champion and the course record-holder at the Frankfurt Marathon, at which he coincidently fell four seconds short of the standing world record in 2011. At the 2009 RAK Half-Marathon, he became the fifth person in history to break 59 minutes with a time of 58:59. Kipsang also won the highly competitive Great North Run in 2012. He will make his New York City Marathon debut in his first return to  the city since winning the 2013 NYC Half.

“I’m ‘getting my New York on!’” said Kipsang. “My preparations for the TCS New York City Marathon have begun, and every day before training I know that without self-discipline, success is impossible.”

Deba, 27, of Ethiopia, who resides in the Bronx, NY, is the fastest-ever New York City female resident in the Marathon by more than 10 minutes, boasting a personal best of 2:19:59, which she ran to finish second in the 2014 Boston Marathon; the time is the fastest that anyone in the women’s field has run in 2014. She has finished in the top nine at the last four New York City Marathons—seventh in 2009, ninth in 2010, and second in 2011 and 2013—and finished second at this year’s 2014 NYC Half. Deba has won eight of the 14 marathons that she has completed in her career and is one of only 18 women in history to have broken 2:20:00 at the distance. After missing the New York City Marathon title by four seconds in 2011 and by less than one minute in 2013, Deba will attempt to become the first New York City resident to accept the coveted laurel wreath in the 40 years since Kathrine Switzer won the race in 1974.

“I’m excited for the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon,” said Deba. “As they say, ‘the third time’s the charm.’ After having two previous years of successful experience, I believe this year will be the most exciting.  I have been training very well and find myself in good shape.  With the will of God, this year will be so perfect. I can’t wait to get back again on the streets of my hometown, New York City, and see the passion, love, and amusement of all my fans. I am so proud of being a New Yorker and part of the most prestigious World Marathon Major, the TCS New York City Marathon.”

In addition to Kipsang and past New York City Marathon champions Mutai and Gebremariam, the men’s international field, representing 17 countries, will feature reigning Olympic and World Championship gold medalist Stephen Kiprotich of Uganda; 2014 Virgin Money London Marathon runner-up Stanley Biwott of Kenya; former 10K world record-holder and Olympic bronze medalist Micah Kogo of Kenya; 2013 New York City Marathon third-place finisher Lusapho April of South Africa; 2012 Tokyo Marathon champion Michael Kipyego of Kenya; Japanese rivals Yuki Kawauchi and Masato Imai, who finished 11th and sixth, respectively, at the 2013 New York City Marathon; 2012 NYC Half champion Peter Cheruiyot Kirui of Kenya; two-time Olympian Abderrahime Bouramdane of Morocco; 2012 Norwegian Olympian Urige Buta; and Irish 5000- and 10,000-meter record-holder Alistair Cragg.

Deba and past New York City Marathon champions Jeptoo, Dado, Kiplagat, and Prokopcuka will be part of an international field representing 11 countries that includes 2011–2012 World Marathon Majors series champion Mary Keitany; 2013 IAAF World Championships Marathon silver medalist Valeria Straneo of Italy; 2012 European 10,000-meter champion Ana Dulce Felix of Portugal; Moroccan Rkia El Moukin, making her debut at the distance; and 2013 European Indoor 3000-meter champion Sara Moreira of Portugal.

Featured Athlete Backgrounds and Notable Performances

·        Kipsang, 32, of Kenya, set the world record in the marathon with a time of 2:03:23 to win the 2013 BMW Berlin Marathon.  The 2012 Olympic Marathon bronze medalist is the only runner in history to run sub-2:05 five times and is a two-time champion and course record-holder of both the Virgin Money London Marathon and the Frankfurt Marathon. The 2013 NYC Half champion’s time of 58:59 at the 2009 RAK Half-Marathon made him the fifth person in history to break 59 minutes at the distance.

·        Mutai, 32, of Kenya, is the course record-holder (2:05:06) and two-time defending champion of the New York City Marathon. He ran the fastest marathon of all time (2:03:02) to win the 2011 Boston Marathon; however, the course is ineligible for IAAF world records due to its net drop in elevation and point-to-point layout. In 2012, Mutai, the reigning NYC Half champion, captured the 2011–2012 World Marathon Majors series title with victories at three of the six World Marathon Majors races: Boston (2011), New York (2011), and Berlin (2012).

·        Gebremariam, 30, won the 2010 New York City Marathon in 2:08:14 in his debut at the distance. He returned to New York in 2011 and finished fourth. The 2009 IAAF World Cross Country champion finished third at both the 2011 and 2013 Boston Marathons and represented his country at the 2004 and 2012 Olympics, finishing fifth in the 5000 meters and eighth in the 10,000 meters, respectively. He was the 2011 NYC Half runner-up and is the former course record-holder of the UAE Healthy Kidney 10K, which he won in 2010 in a time of 27:42.

·        Kiprotich, 25, of Uganda, won the 2012 London Olympic Marathon in a time of 2:08:01; it was Uganda’s second-ever Olympic gold medal and first since 1972. His subsequent victory at the 2013 IAAF World Championships marathon (2:09:51) made him only the second man in history to earn both titles. Last year, he finished 12th in his first New York City Marathon appearance.

·        Kogo, 28, of Kenya, is the former world record-holder in the road 10K (27:01) and the 2008 Olympic 10,000-meter bronze medalist. Before finishing fourth at the 2013 Chicago Marathon, he made his marathon debut at the 2013 Boston Marathon, finishing second by only five seconds. The 2011 Healthy Kidney 10K runner-up is the sixth-fastest 10,000-meter runner in history, with a personal best of 26:35.63.

·        Deba, 27, of Ethiopia and residing in the Bronx, NY, is the fastest-ever New York City female resident in the marathon. She ran 2:19:59 to finish second at the 2014 Boston Marathon. The two-time runner-up at the New York City Marathon (2011, 2013) has also finished seventh (2009) and ninth (2010) in the event. One of only 18 women in history to break 2:20 at the distance, she has run the fastest time this year of any woman in the field. The 2014 NYC Half runner-up has won eight of 14 marathons during her career.

·        Jeptoo, 30, is the reigning New York City Marathon champion. She earned the 2012–2013 World Marathon Majors series title with victories at both the New York and London marathons in 2013, a silver-medal performance at the 2012 London Olympic Marathon, and a third-place finish at the 2012 London Marathon. She ran the third-fastest half-marathon of all time (1:05:45) to win the 2013 Great North Run and has a marathon personal best of 2:20:14.

·        Dado, 30, of Ethiopia, won the 2011 New York City Marathon champion in her personal best of 2:23:15, the fastest time ever run by an Ethiopian at the event. She is the former course record-holder of the NYC Half, having won the 2012 race in 1:08:35. She won the Rome City Marathon for three consecutive years (2009–2011), finished fourth at the 2012 Boston Marathon, and won this year’s Prague Marathon in 2:23:34.

·        Kiplagat, 34, of Kenya, is a two-time IAAF World Championships gold medalist and the only woman to successfully defend her gold medal at that event. The 2012 New York Mini 10K champion and 2011 NYC Half runner-up won the 2010 New York City Marathon in 2:28:20. Kiplagat, a 2012 Olympian, won this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon and finished second in that race in 2012.

·        Prokopcuka, 37, of Latvia, is a two-time champion of the New York City Marathon (2005, 2006), one of only seven women to win two titles. In her other three New York City Marathon appearances, she placed third (2007, 2013) and fifth (2004). She holds seven Latvian national records, including for the marathon, and represented Latvia on the track in three Olympics (1996, 2000, 2004).

·        Keitany, 32, of Kenya, ran the second-fastest half-marathon of all time (1:05:39) to set the course record at the 2014 Great North Run. She won two consecutive London Marathons (2011, 2012), the latter in a blistering 2:18:37—a time that makes her the second-fastest woman in history behind the legendary Paula Radcliffe. The fourth-place finisher at the 2012 London Olympic Marathon has placed third twice at the New York City Marathon (2010, 2011) and won the 2011–2012 World Marathon Majors series title.

·        Straneo, 38, of Italy, is the 2013 IAAF World Championships Marathon silver medalist and owner of the Italian national records for that distance (2:23:44). She finished second at the 2014 European Championships Marathon and eighth at the 2012 London Olympic Marathon, running 2:25:27 in both events.

Professional Men

Marathon Personal Best

Geoffrey Mutai, KEN

2:03:02*

Wilson Kipsang, KEN

2:03:23

Gebre Gebremariam, ETH

2:04:53

Stanley Biwott, KEN

2:04:55

Peter Cheruiyot Kirui, KEN

2:06:31

Michael Kipyego, KEN

2:06:48

Micah Kogo, KEN

2:06:56

Stephen Kiprotich, UGA

2:07:20

Abderrahime Bouramdane, MAR

2:07:33

Yuki Kawauchi, JPN

2:08:14

Luspaho April, RSA

2:08:32

Urige Buta, NOR

2:09:27

Masato Imai, JPN

2:09:30

Alistair Cragg, IRL

2:23:05

*Time ineligible for IAAF record purposes

 

Professional Women

Marathon Personal Best

Mary Keitany, KEN

2:18:37

Edna Kiplagat, KEN

2:19:50

Buzunesh Deba, ETH

2:19:59

Priscah Jeptoo, KEN

2:20:14

Jelena Prokopcuka, LAT

2:22:56

Firehiwot Dado, ETH

2:23:15

Valeria Straneo, ITA

2:23:44

Ana Dulce Félix, POR

2:25:40

Rkia El Moukim, MAR

Debut (1:10: 03 HM)

Sara Moreira, POR

Debut (1:10:08 HM)

The TCS New York City Marathon will be televised live nationally on ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes+ from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. EST. For those who have video subscriptions with affiliated providers, the race will also be available via WatchESPN. The race will be broadcast live in the New York City metropolitan area on WABC-TV from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. EST. Viewers can also watch the race on 7online or via WatchABC on mobile devices (for participating cable providers). Pre-race features from the start at Fort Wadsworth will be broadcast live at 7:00 a.m. on WABC-TV, 7online.com, and WatchABC, and a national highlights show will air from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. on local ABC affiliates. International viewers can watch the broadcast via a live digital stream from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. EST on 7online.com or via a variety of global broadcast partners (international viewers should check local listings).

Last year, 50,266 runners crossed the finish line of the New York City Marathon, making it the world’s largest marathon ever. Runners from more than 100 countries and each of the 50 states participated.

About the TCS New York City Marathon

The TCS New York City Marathon is the most popular and inclusive marathon in the world, attracting the world’s top professional athletes and a vast range of recreational runners. The race began in 1970 with just 127 entrants racing four laps of Central Park. Today, an estimated 50,000 runners from around the world tour New York City’s five boroughs, starting on Staten Island at the foot of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge and finishing in Central Park. Participants include Olympians, Paralympians, wheelchair racers, top age-group competitors, and many thousands who run for charity and to achieve their own personal goals. Millions of fans cheer the runners from the streets and watch the global television broadcast. The race is part of the World Marathon Majors, an alliance of the world’s six biggest marathons that determines each year’s top male and top female marathoner. The TCS New York City Marathon is the premier event of New York Road Runners, the world’s foremost community running organization, whose mission is to help and inspire people through running. Tata Consultancy Services, a leading global IT services, consulting, and business solutions organization, is the Premier Partner of NYRR and is in its inaugural year as title sponsor of the TCS New York City Marathon.

 

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