Desiree Davila, Edna Kiplagat, and Firehiwot Dado lead a deep international field for the 40th anniversary of the NYRR New York Mini 10K, New York Road Runners president and CEO Mary Wittenberg announced today.
The all-women race, which features eight 2012 Olympians, will take place on Saturday, June 9, in Central Park beginning at 8:00 a.m. Three of the event’s legends—race co-founders Kathrine Switzer and Nina Kuscsik and the Mini’s first champion, Jacqueline Dixon—will be honored in a post-race ceremony.
“On this special anniversary year of the world’s first all-women road race and of Title IX, we’re celebrating with one of the strongest and most diverse women’s fields around,” said Wittenberg. “Our outstanding roster of champions and legends, coupled with thousands of active women from around the nation, will more than mark the Mini’s 40th anniversary. It may be called the Mini, but this race, and what it stands for, is truly massive.”
Davila, 28, of Rochester Hills, MI, will compete for Team USA in the Women’s Olympic Marathon, thanks to her runner-up finish in the U. S. Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials in January. The London Games will be Davila’s first; she will also be competing in the NYRR New York Mini 10K for the first time.
“The Mini 10K has been on my bucket list of races for some time,” said Davila. “I’m looking forward to being a part of the 40th anniversary and competing on the same roads as some of the greatest female runners ever.”
Past champions of the Mini include Grete Waitz, Francie Larrieu Smith, Ingrid Kristiansen, Lisa Martin, Liz McColgan, Tegla Loroupe, Lornah Kiplagat, Paula Radcliffe, and Linet Masai.
Kiplagat, 32, is the reigning World Marathon Champion and the 2010 ING New York City Marathon winner. She was named to Kenya’s Olympic Marathon team after her 2:19:50 runner-up performance this spring in the Virgin London Marathon.
Dado, 28, is the 2011 ING New York City Marathon and NYC Half 2012 champion. At the Mini, she will once again face fellow Ethiopian Buzunesh Deba, the 2011 ING New York City Marathon runner-up, who lives and trains in the Bronx.
In addition to Davila and Kiplagat, 2012 Olympians in the field include Jessica Augusto, Portugal; Claire Hallissey, Great Britain; Hilda Kibet, Netherlands; Diane Nukuri-Johnson, Burundi; Irvette Van Blerk, South Africa; and Lidia Simon, Romania. Simon, 38, will be competing in her fifth Olympic marathon, the only athlete ever to do so.
In its inaugural running in 1972, the Mini had 78 entrants. Since then, more than 150,000 women have finished the race.
“Our races are to our sport what Wimbledon and the Australian, U.S., and French Opens are to tennis, and what the Masters, U.S., and British Opens and PGA Championship are to golf. Each race has the history, the tradition, the honor roll of legendary champions, and a special place in the eyes of all to make them stand apart from the other events.” Mary Wittenberg