A fast field of Kenyans and Ethiopians will contend for titles in the French capital next month.
First it was Kenenisa Bekele, a three-time Olympic champion on the track, who committed to running the Schneider Electric Marathon de Paris.
Last week, the rest of the elite field was announced for the April 6 race.
Bekele, an Ethiopian who has amassed a chest of world championships gold medals in events ranging from cross-country to the 10K, will make his marathon debut in Paris. He’ll be challenged by Abdullah Shami (Ethiopia), whose best marathon time of 2:05:42 is the fastest in the field, Azmeraw Bekele, who owns a 26.2-mile low mark of 2:07:12, and several others with sub-2:10 personal bests.
Kenyans have won the last three men’s titles in Paris; Mark Kiptoo might have the best chance of keeping the race in that nation’s hands. His countrymen Luka Kanda, Gideon Kipketer, and Mike Kigen are also in the field.
Two Kenyans top the list of elite women, with Valentine Kipketer and Flomena Cheyech sporting marathon personal records of 2:23:05 and 2:24:34, respectively.
Abdullah Shami (ETH), 2:05:42
Mark Kiptoo (KEN), 2:06:16
Getachew Negari Terfa (ETH), 2:07:32
Limenih Getachew (ETH), 2:07:35
Gezahagn Girma (ETH), 2:07:41
Luka Kanda (KEN), 2:08:04
Gideon Kipketer (KEN), 2:08:14
Mike Kigen (KEN), 2:08:24
Simon Munyutu (FRA), 2:09:24
Gregoriy Andreyev (RUS), 2:10:25
Kenenisa Bekele (ETH), debut
Behailu Ketema (ETH), debut
Valentine Kipketer (KEN), 2:23:05
Flomena Cheyech (KEN), 2:24:34
Meskerem Assefa (ETH), 2:25:17
Martha Komu (FRA), 2:25:33
Zemzem Ahmed (ETH), 2:27:12
Sarah Chepchirchir (KEN), debut
For More: IAAF.org