Strong fields assembled for Seattle Rock ‘N’ Roll Marathon and Half Marathon.
The marathon fields lack foreign elite talent, creating an opportunity for American runners to claim a major marathon title. In the women’s half marathon former Boston Marathon winner Berhane Adere will toe the line. Here are the top contenders on the men’s and women’s side of each race:
Men’s Half Marathon
Nicolas Koech (Kenya)
In March of this year, Nicolas Koech won the Prague Half Marathon with a blazing time of 1:00:07.
Elija Nyabuti (Kenya)
Twenty-nine-year-old Elija Nyabuti brings a half marathon PR of 1:01:19 to Saturday’s race. He’s also run a 2:14:28 marathon.
Women’s Half Marathon
Berhane Adere (Ethiopia)
The Dubai Marathon has had only one female winner in the last three years, and it’s Berhane Adere, who is also a former 10,000m world champion. Her half marathon PR is 1:08:17.
Nuta Olaru (Romania)
Nuta Olaru represented her country in the 2004 Olympics and won the inaugural Rock ‘N’ Roll San Antonio Marathon (2:28:54) last year.
Jynocel Basweti (Kenya)
Jynocel Basweti won the 2007 Austin Marathon in 2:14:02 and won both the Richmond Marathon and the Denver Marathon last year.
Mark Batres (USA)
Mark Batres won this year’s Santa Barbara Wine Country Half Marathon in a course record time of 1:05:45. His marathon PR is 2:19:07.
Andy Martin (USA)
Andy Martin set his marathon PR of 2:20:04 back in 1999 and won the hilly Big Sur Marathon in 2:29:50 last year.
Leah Thorvilson (USA)
Leah Thorvilson has already won two marathons this year, in Green Bay (2:37:55) and Little Rock (2:44:19).
For more information on the Seattle Rock ‘N’ Roll Marathon and Half Marathon check out the race site at www.rnrseattle.com .