New York Marathon Preview

posted by carabyrd, a Women Talk Sports blogger
Friday, November 2, 2012 at 9:06am EDT

About carabyrd:

Cara Hawkins is a social media community manager and graduated with her masters in advertising from University of Texas. Cara is a former DII runner competing in everything from the 4x400m to Cross C...more

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The ING New York marathon will go on despite the damage of Sandy.  New York Road runners have made adjustments including canceling the opening ceremonies and Dash to Finish 5k.  The marathon will happen and the elite fields are as strong as ever including a host contenders and including many Americans.  There are 42 elite runners in the field but here are the ones who have a chance at making an impact on the race.

The two front runners for the win have both ran sub 2: 20. The first is Edna Kiplagat who won the 2010 edition of the New York marathon and the 2011 world championships.  Kiplagat ran her personal record of 2:19.50 at the 2012 London Marathon. She is looking to rebound from a subpar showing at the Olympic Marathon where she ran a 2:27.52.  Except for the Olympics, she had never finished lower than third in a major marathon. Expect a major challenge from Tiki Gelena who ran a 2:18.58 this spring at Rotterdam and won the Olympic marathon.  Did I mention, she is only 25. On paper, she looks unbeatable. 

There are three more runners who have ran sub 2:24 in the last few years.  Sharon Cherop is the reigning Boston champion and has a personal record of 2:22:39. Tatyana Arknipova is a former steeplechaser who has moved up distances and is the bronze medalist in the Olympic marathon with a time of 2:23.29. Bizunesh Deba is the 2011 New York marathon runner-up with a 2:23.19. There have been few results from her since that race. It will be interesting to see if she can match her fitness from last year. 

There could be plenty of dark horses that could impact this race.  Do not be surprised to see Kim Smith finally have her big marathon break through.  She has gone under 68 minutes in the half marathon and has personal record of 2:25:21 in the marathon.  Most of know, she is not afraid to make the move.

The field of Americans for this race might be the best that doesn’t feature Shalane Flanagan, Kara Goucher and Desiree Davila. Olympians Julie Culley, Amy Hastings and Janet Bawcom will be moving up distance from their Olympic events.  Amy Hastings and Janet Bawcom were fourth and fifth in Olympic Marathon trials. Hastings has a personal record of 2:27:03 and has changed her coaching situation since the Olympics. Hastings has been training Kim Smith and it will be interesting to see if change improves her time. Bawcom has personal record of 2:29.45 which was eight minute PR and she looks to continue to improve. Julie Culley, an Olympian in the 5k, will be making her debut at the marathon distance.  Also look for Molly Pritz, ballerina turned runner, to improve on her place and time from last year’s marathon (2:31:52 for 12th) where she ran without a coach or sponsor. She is now being coached by Mark Hadley but has the support Brad Hudson in Boulder, Colorado.

The debate on if this race should happen will likely rage until race day but these elite runners will be focused on making this race the most competitive as possible. 

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