New York Road Runners announces the first 12 professionals that will compete in the November race.
The trio of top American marathon runners — Meb Keflezighi, Ryan Hall, and Kara Goucher — will compete in the ING New York City Marathon this fall, it was announced on Tuesday.
Twelve professionals were added to the field, six of whom are Olympians. All are Americans.
The 38-year-old Keflezighi won the 2009 edition of the race, making him the first American winner since 1982. At the 2004 Olympics he finished second in the marathon; in London last summer, he took fourth. Overall, Keflezighi has six top-10 finishes in New York.
“Running the ING New York City Marathon is always a great pleasure and honor for me,” Keflezighi said in a New York Road Runners press release. “This year’s race will be extra special because of the cancellation last year. As always, I will train and ‘run to win.’”
The race, which takes place Nov. 3, will be Hall’s second time running through the city’s five boroughs. He placed fourth in 2009 with a time of 2:10:36. Hall’s marathon personal best is a 2:04:58, which he ran at the 2011 Boston Marathon. The time still holds as the fastest in all conditions for an American.
“I have one goal in mind for this year’s ING New York City Marathon: redemption — restore what has been lost,” said the 30-year-old Hall, who withdrew from the 2012 Olympic marathon with a hamstring injury. “I have had my fair share of struggles since qualifying for the 2012 London Olympic Marathon; however, those struggles are now behind me and the lessons learned are paving the path to what I hope is a very redemptive ING New York City Marathon.”
Goucher, 35, first ran New York in 2008 and clocked the fastest debut time for an American woman (2:25:33) to place third. She hasn’t competed in New York since, but she’s run Boston three times and finished third (2009), fifth (2011), and sixth (2013).
Goucher said she’s been waiting to return to New York “when the timing was right.”
“So much in my life has changed during the five years since I last ran this race, but my love for NYC remains the same; it feels like a full-circle moment to return to NYC, where my marathon career began and to return with my son,” Goucher said. “I have been eager to return to NYC when the timing was right, and the time is now.”
NYRR President Mary Wittenberg said this year’s race will be dedicated to the people of New York and also for Boston, in the wake of the terrorist bombing at April’s race.
Wittenberg canceled the 2012 New York City Marathon because of Hurricane Sandy, which decimated the city and its surrounding areas. More than 2 million homes lost power in the state of New York.
“Meb, Ryan, and Kara are examples of what is so great about our sport — competitors who overcome obstacles, keep going, and help lift the running community,” Wittenberg said. “On Marathon Day we’ll run for our city, for Boston, and for runners everywhere. In this year of added meaning, it is an honor to welcome back so many of our city’s and our nation’s favorite American runners and to have these three great athletes lead us as the spirit and excitement of this great race returns to New York.”