The two Boulderites should contend for the win on Sunday.
CHICAGO, IL – For the fifth straight year the XSport Fitness Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago Half Marathon presented by HumanaVitality will take over the streets of downtown on Sunday morning. Chicago’s premier half marathon will welcome a notable field of elite runners and celebrities to the starting line, along with more than 20,000 total participants.
Leading the field will be Boulder, Colo. residents Fernando Cabada and Jeffrey Eggleston, who is running the race as a final tune-up race prior to representing Team USA in the marathon at the IAAF World Championships in Moscow, Russia next month. Eggleston set his marathon best in Chicago last fall with a time of 2:12:03. His PR for the half marathon is 1:03:59.
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“Eggleston is using this half as a tune up for the world championships obviously, which fits perfectly with his training schedule,” said Tracy Sundlun, SVP of race organizer Competitor Group, Inc. “He ran 2:13 at our Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathon last year and knows the quality of event he’s going to get as a tune up race to see where he’s at. He’ll be racing high-end guys and this won’t be a walk in the park. We are absolutely thrilled that both Jeffery and Fernando are here, as well as a load of other high-end athletes.”
Cabada is no stranger to the Rock ‘n’ Roll Series, winning last fall’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Los Angeles Half Marathon. Cabada owns a marathon PR of 2:11:53, which placed him seventh at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon. He is a three-time U.S. champion, winning the U.S. 25K Championship in 2011 en route to setting the then American record.
“I always enjoy running the Rock ‘n’ Roll events and with the new Half-Marathon Grand Prix Series, it’s even more attractive,” said Cabada, referencing the two-year points based competition including all 2013 and 2014 Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathons. “I am confident that I will be in the mix to get the win in Chicago this weekend.”
The American contenders will face a trio of U.S.-based Kenyans lead by Sammy Kiplagat, winner of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Dallas Half Marathon earlier this year. Elite contenders from Illinois include Thomas Frazer from Lake Forest and Emisael Favela from Cicero. Several women from the Chicago area are also competing in the professional field, including Pamela Staton, Jill Czarnik, Loryn King Kromrey and Amber Druin.
In addition to the elite lineup, several celebrities will also participate at the fifth annual event. NBC sports reporter and Access Hollywood correspondent Michelle Beadle will run in the half marathon on behalf of ASPCA. Former San Francisco 49er and three-time Super Bowl champion Roger Craig will also participate in the half marathon as well as Danni Allen, winner of the The Biggest Loser Season 14.
The race begins at 6:30 AM at the intersection of Columbus Dr. and Monroe, with a 13.1 and 3.1-mile courses running exclusively on the streets of downtown Chicago. The event will conclude with a finish line festival and headliner concert featuring Walk Off The Earth at Grant Park.