World-Class Field Set For The Peachtree Road Race

Ryan Hall is one of the top Americans at the Peachtree Road Race on July 4. Photo:

Ryan Hall is one of the top Americans entered in the Peachtree Road Race on July 4. Photo:

Ryan Hall leads the way for the Americans.

From: Running USA

ATLANTA — Following tradition, a world class men’s and women’s field will toe the line at the start of the 42nd running of the AJC Peachtree Road Race on Monday, July 4. For the fourth time in the past five years, the AJC Peachtree Road Race will again host the USA Men’s 10K Championship as well as serve as the 2011 Professional Road Running Organization’s (PRRO) Race of Champions. Athletes in the AJC Peachtree Road Race will be competing for a share of the $111,300 overall prize purse, which includes $30,000 for the USA Men’s 10K Championship.

Additionally, two men and one woman competing in the 2011 Peachtree are eligible to receive a $10,000 PRRO bonus*. Eligible athletes must place first in the AJC Peachtree Road Race in order to take home the PRRO bonus.

“With one of the strongest American men’s field we’ve ever had, and very competitive Open fields on both the men’s and women’s sides, we anticipate a very exciting and close race,” said Tracey Russell, Race Director for the AJC Peachtree Road Race and Executive Director of the Atlanta Track Club.

This year’s men’s field is one of the most competitive in the event’s recent history, with more than 40 runners. Sammy Kitwara of Kenya, 2009 race champion with the second fastest Peachtree finish on record (27 minutes, 22 seconds), will be vying for another first place finish at Peachtree. He clocked the sixth fastest time in the world so far this year to win the World’s Best 10K (27:35) in February, and his win three months later at the Abraham Rosa 10K (28:47) was his third consecutive title at that event.

Challenging Kitwara will be countryman Mathew Kisorio, the ING Rock ‘n’ Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon champion who finished fourth at this year’s World Cross Country Championships in March and ran the third fastest 25K of all time in May at the 2011 Berlin 25K (1:12:12).

Two runners in this year’s men’s field are contenders for the PRRO Circuit payout after placing first at one of the four races on the 2010-11 PRRO Circuit schedule, which includes the Utica Boilermaker 15K, World’s Best 10K, the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile and Lilac Bloomsday Run 12K.

Kitwara qualified after winning 2011’s World’s Best 10K and Simon Ndirangu (KEN) took top honors at the 2011 Lilac Bloomsday Run 12K (33:58). Misiker Mekonnin is the sole woman eligible for the 2011 PRRO Circuit bonus. The Ethiopian won the 2011 Lilac Bloomsday 12K (40:25).

Top Americans competing for the USA Men’s 10K title and the accompanying $10,000 include top U.S. marathoner and Olympian Ryan Hall; 2010 USA Men’s 10K champion Ed Moran, who placed 10th overall at last year’s Peachtree (28:19); Scott Bauhs, who is making his AJC Peachtree Road Race debut; Aaron Braun, who placed 14th in last year’s USA Men’s 10K Championship (29:22), and 2007-09 USA Men’s 10K champion and three-time Olympian Abdi Abdirahman.

Live coverage of the USA Men’s 10K Championship will available in cooperation with at beginning at 7:30am EDT on July 4.

In the women’s race, 2010 Peachtree runner-up, Alice Timbilili (KEN) will return to try and claim top honors at the 2011 AJC Peachtree Road Race, and Mekonnin, with the $10,000 PRRO bonus on the line, will also be one to watch on the women’s side.

The 42nd running of the AJC Peachtree Road Race will take place on Monday, July 4, 2011. The Fourth of July tradition begins at 7:30am on Peachtree Road by Lenox Square Mall and finishes on 10th Street near Piedmont Park.

*If a PRRO eligible male and female runner both win the AJC Peachtree Road Race, the $10,000 will be divided in half between the two athletes.

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