Americans Molly Huddle, Meb Keflezighi, Abdi, Jared Ward, Chris Derrick, Amy Cragg, Desi Linden, and Emily Sisson Running 2017 United Airlines NYC Half

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by: NYRR (press release)
February 22, 2017

Six U.S. Olympians and seven U.S. Paralympians to highlight star-studded American contingent at the first event of the 2017 NYRR Five-Borough Series on Sunday, March 19 

Race will be broadcast live in the New York area on WABC-TV, Channel 7, and internationally via a variety of global broadcast partners

New York, February 22, 2017 Tatyana McFadden and Molly Huddle will go for their second and third consecutive United Airlines NYC Half titles, respectively, on Sunday, March 19, while Meb Keflezighi will race the event for the sixth time to kick off his final season as a professional athlete. The three NYRR Team for Kids Ambassadors will lead an American contingent that features six U.S. Olympians and seven U.S. Paralympians, including four of the six U.S. Olympic marathoners who served as Grand Marshals of the 2016 TCS New York City Marathon.

“We’re thrilled to have the best group of U.S. athletes in the race’s history competing in this year’s United Airlines NYC Half,” said Peter Ciaccia, president of events for New York Road Runners and race director of the TCS New York City Marathon. “While 20,000 runners take to the streets of Manhattan, and hundreds of younger runners and youth wheelchair racers participate in the free NYRR Times Square Youth Run, Molly will go for a three-peat, Tatyana will look to defend her title and Meb will start his journey through his final pro season, which will culminate back here in November at the TCS New York City Marathon. It has all the makings of a historic day on the streets of New York City.”

Huddle won a close won in 2016

Huddle won a close won in 2016

Huddle, 32, of Providence, RI, is the two-time United Airlines NYC Half reigning champion, having defended her title at last year’s race in an event-record time of 1:07:41. She took the tape one-tenth of a second ahead of Kenya’s Joyce Chepkirui – the smallest margin of victory in event history. She continued her strong run of form throughout the year, setting an American record over 10,000 meters at the Rio 2016 Olympics and taking third place in 2:28:13 in her marathon debut at the TCS New York City Marathon. Her finish was the highest of any American debut since Shalane Flanagan’s runner-up finish in 2010

“I look forward to returning for my fourth United Airlines NYC Half to kick off the 2017 season,” Huddle said. “The race has been a great opportunity to test the strength built over the winter months and to see how things stack up against a world-class field. I always love the chance to run with New York Road Runners.”

Keflezighi, 41, of San Diego, CA, is a four-time Olympian who will be racing the United Airlines NYC Half for the sixth time. His best finish at the event came in 2006, when he placed second, two years after he won a silver medal in the Athens Olympic Marathon. Keflezighi, who will race the final marathon of his professional career at the 2017 TCS New York City Marathon, was the first American in 27 years to win the New York City Marathon in 2009, and five years later he was victorious at the Boston Marathon. Last November, he joined four other members of the U.S. Olympic Marathon Team as a Grand Marshal for the TCS New York City Marathon.

“I am excited to race the United Airlines NYC Half again this year as a tune-up for the Boston Marathon,” Keflezighi said. “NYRR races have been a big part of my career, so it is only right that I will participate in the United Airlines NYC Half this spring and complete my professional marathon career at the TCS New York City Marathon this fall.”

McFadden, 27, of Clarksville, MD, will look to defend her United Airlines NYC Half title in the professional wheelchair division after setting an event record of 52:25 at last year’s race. In November, she won her fourth consecutive and fifth overall TCS New York City Marathon, and she’s already secured the first Abbott World Marathon Majors women’s wheelchair title. A 17-time Paralympic medalist who recently donated a racing chair’s NYRR Youth Wheelchair Training Program, McFadden won six medals at the Rio 2016 Games, including gold medals over 400, 800, 1500 and 5000 meters.

“The United Airlines NYC Half is a really good race to start off the season and just a great setup before the Boston Marathon,” McFadden said. “This race hits all the marks – it has tough climbs, twists, turns, and a long straightaway that tests your strength. It’s also really cool running through the heart of New York City.”

Additional Top Men’s Professional Athletes of Interest:

  • Abdi Abdirahman, 40, of Tucson, AZ, was the top American finisher at the 2016 TCS New York City Marathon, finishing third in 2:11.23 to become the oldest male runner in event history to reach the podium. He is a four-time Olympian and was the runner-up at the 2007 NYC Half.
  • Jared Ward, 28, of Kaysville, UT, finished sixth at the Rio 2016 Olympic Marathon and then served as a Grand Marshal of the TCS New York City Marathon last November. In 2015, he won U.S. titles in the 20K, 25K and marathon.
  • Chris Derrick, 26, of Portland, OR, is a three-time winner of the USATF Cross Country Championships who finished fifth over 10,000 meters at last summer’s U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials.
  • Josh George (wheelchair division), 33, of Champaign, IL won the inaugural professional wheelchair race at the 2014 NYC Half and placed second the following year. The four-time Paralympian and five-time Paralympic medalist was the runner-up at the 2015 TCS New York City Marathon and was third at the 2016 edition of the event.

Additional Top Women’s Professional Athletes of Interest:

  • Amy Cragg, 33, of Portland, OR, will be making her United Airlines NYC Half debut after placing ninth at the Rio 2016 Olympic Marathon and serving as a Grand Marshal of the 2016 TCS New York City Marathon. Cragg qualified for the 2016 Olympics by winning the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials last February. The two-time Olympic Trials champion ran an 83-second half-marathon personal best of 1:08:27 in February.
  • Desiree Linden, 33, of Rochester Hills, MI, is a two-time Olympian who was the fastest American at both the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon and 2015 Boston Marathon, finishing fifth and fourth in those races, respectively. As a member of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Marathon Team, she served as one of the Grand Marshals of the 2016 TCS New York City Marathon.
  • Emily Sisson, 25, of Providence, RI, will be making her half marathon debut after winning the USATF 10K Championship on the roads last season, in addition to finishing as the runner-up at the 20K Championships and 5K Championships.
  • Amanda McGrory (wheelchair division), 30, of Savoy, IL, won her New York City Marathon debut in 2006 and finished third at last year’s edition of the event. The seven-time Paralympic medalist won three medals at the Rio 2016 Games and will be racing the United Airlines NYC Half for the fourth time.

Top American Men – Professional Runners

NamePersonal Best Half-MarathonTwitter Handle
Abdi Abdirahman1:00:29@Abdi_runs
Diego Estrada1:00:51@estradadiego
Meb Keflezighi1:01:00@runmeb
Shadrack Biwott1:01:25@skiptoob
Jared Ward1:01:42@jwardy21
Scott MacPherson1:02:56@ScottyMacRuns
Mike Morgan1:02:56@mikegmorgan
Johnny Crain1:03:21@Jacrain27
Noah Droddy1:03:22@IBuiltTheArk
Chris Derrick1:03:41@CDerrickRun
Luke Humphrey1:03:57@LucusHumphrey
Andy Weaver1:04:27@weavittome
Brendan Martin1:04:38@bmar89
Chris Bendtsen1:04:43@chrisbendtsen

 

Top American Women – Professional Runners

NamePersonal Best Half-MarathonTwitter Handle
Molly Huddle1:07:41@MollyHuddle
Amy Cragg1:08:27@HastyHastings
Desiree Linden1:10:34@des_linden
Dot McMahan1:11:50 
Liz Costello1:12:35 
Danna Herrick1:12:55@dkherrick
Emily SissonDebut@Em_Sisson

 

Top American Men – Professional Wheelchairs

NamePersonal Best Half-MarathonTwitter Handle
Josh George44:00@jsgeorge
Krige Schabort45:13@KSchabort
Daniel Romanchuk48:09 
Brian Siemann49:00@bsiemann

 

Top American Women – Professional Wheelchairs

NamePersonal Best Half-MarathonTwitter Handle
Amanda McGrory50:47@alittlechipped
Kartina Gerhard51:28 
Tatyana McFadden52:28@TatyanaMcFadden
Susannah Scaroni53:58@kenyanscaroni
Arielle Rausin54:44@racingrausin

The 2017 United Airlines NYC Half will feature 20,000 runners from more than 90 countries in the 13.1-mile race, which starts in Central Park, heads uptown through Harlem then back through famed Times Square to the finish line near Wall Street in downtown Manhattan.

The third annual NYRR Times Square Youth Run will showcase 1,000 youth runners in a 1500-meter out-and-back course through the heart of Times Square. Many of the young runners participate in NYRR’s free, year-round youth running programs and events that serve more than 215,000 youth across the country annually.

The event will be broadcast live in the New York area on WABC-TV, Channel 7 and will be shown internationally via a variety of global broadcast partners.

 

 


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Posted in: Men's Running