January 14: Ten Past Champions Headline Super Deep Fields For 2018 Chevron Houston Marathon And Aramco Houston Half Marathon

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Press Release
January 4, 2018

HOUSTON (December 28, 2017) – The Houston Marathon Committee (HMC) revealed an increased prize purse for the 2018 Chevron Houston Marathon and Aramco Houston Half Marathon races, alongside an impressive elite field complete with 10 past champions and new up-and-coming challengers who are certain to push the boundaries of competition.

“We anticipate seeing a competitive race that will once again showcase the draw of our event at the professional level,” said Chevron Houston Marathon Race Director and Board President Brant Kotch. “Our elite committee has developed an outstanding reputation in the sport for the level of service they provide to our professional athletes, and because of their efforts the Chevron Houston Marathon and Aramco Houston Half Marathon continue to prove themselves among the top road races on the world stage.”

Past Champions to Battle for Chevron Houston Marathon Title 
The race to the tape will be tight with two returning champions in the men’s field and four past champions in the women’s race of the Chevron Houston Marathon. Dominic Ondoro (KEN), the 2017 champion returns to defend his title, while Bazu Worku (ETH), 2013 and 2014 Chevron Houston Marathon Champion, hopes to challenge Ondoro and the rest of the proven men’s field. In the women’s race, Veronicah Nyaruai Wanjiru (ERI), the 2017 Aramco Houston Half Marathon winner, moves up in distance to the Chevron Houston Marathon this year. But a title in the marathon distance won’t come easy to Wanjiru here in Houston. She’ll have to battle against Biruktayit Degefa (ETH), the 2016 Chevron Houston Marathon champion, who is back after her runner-up finish in 2017; Abebech Afework Bekele (ETH), the 2014 Chevron Houston Marathon champion, returns for the first time since her victory; and Mamitu Daska (ETH), the 2011 Chevron Houston Marathon champion and 2013 Aramco Houston Half Marathon champion will look to contest the crown.

Fastest Field in Aramco Houston Half Marathon History
With seven men – and an eighth making his debut – whose personal bests are under 60:00, and 12 women who have run faster than 1:10, both the men’s and women’s fields are by far the fastest ever assembled for the Aramco Houston Half Marathon, and arguably rank among the deepest field ever assembled in the U.S at the half marathon distance. Leading the charge in the men’s field is Alex Korio Oloitiptit (KEN) with a personal best of 58:51. Chasing closely on his heels will be an impressive men’s field including Feyisa Lelisa (ETH), the course record-holder and two-time winner of the Aramco Houston Half Marathon. Returning to the women’s field is 2016 champion and course and U.S. soil record holder Mary Wacera (KEN) with her time of 1:06:29. She stands to be challenged by Americans Molly Huddle and Jordan Hasay, both capable of running away with the American record, currently held by Deena Kastor (1:07:34).

Prize Purse Continues to Grow with Draw of Elite Competitors 
The 2018 Chevron Houston Marathon and Aramco Houston Marathon will award the highest elite prize purse to date. New for all four races in 2018 is the extension of prize money awarded to the top eight finishers in all four races – previously prize money was awarded through the top seven finishers. “We are fortunate to be able to accommodate one of the largest professional fields in the industry. We want to advance the level of competition our races draw, and continuously evaluating our total prize purse is one of the ways we facilitate the growth of our elite program,” said Kotch. A total of $281,000 in guaranteed prize money will be awarded on Jan. 14, including a $45,000 first place payout for both the men’s and women’s champions at the 2018 Chevron Houston Marathon and a $20,000 first place payout for both the men’s and women’s champions at the 2018 Aramco Houston Half Marathon.

For a complete list of prize money please visit: www.chevronhoustonmarathon.com/participants/elites/

Elite Field as of December 28, 2017

Men’s MarathonPersonal Best
Bazu Worku2:05:25
Yitayal Atnafu2:07:21
Dominic Ondoro2:08:00
Milton Kiplagat Rotich2:08:55
Joshua Kipkorir2:09:50
Elisha Barno2:10:21
Isaac Korir2:11:02
Nelson Oyugi2:11:41
Cristian Pacheco2:12:16
Patrick Rizzo2:13:42
Daniel Mesfun2:14:02
Dawit Weldesilasie2:15:33
Zachary Hine2:16:40
Sage Canaday2:16:52
Tyler Jermann2:16:52
John Raneri2:18:07
Jonathan Mott2:18:12
Mason Frank2:18:34
Ben Zywicki2:18:35
Evan Gaynor2:20:35
Michael Crouch2:21:25
Brian Atkinson2:22:47
Franklin Jimenez2:22:54
Ben Fletcher2:24:57
Wilkerson Given2:27:50

 

Women’s MarathonPersonal Best
Mamitu Daska2:21:59
Abebech Afework Bekele2:23:33
Biruktayit Degefa2:23:51
Belaynesh Oljira2:24:21
Melesech Tsegaye Beyene2:26:44
Rahma Tusa2:27:21
Aynalem Teferi2:28:18
Tsehay Desalegn2:28:35
Gladys Kipsoi2:29:53
Lindsey Scherf2:32:19
Sarah Crouch2:32:44
Susanna Sullivan2:35:39
Polina Carlson2:35:42
Caroline LeFrak2:38:14
Merrilee Blackham2:41:59
Samantha Calderon2:42:00
Leah Nook Frost2:42:52
Hiruni Wijayaratne2:43:31
Kayla AtkinsonDebut
Veronicah Nyaruai WanjiruDebut

 

Men’s Half MarathonPersonal Best
Alex Korio Oloitiptit0:58:51
Guye Adola Idemo0:59:06
Leul Gebresilase0:59:18
Daniel Wanjiru0:59:20
Feyisa Lelisa0:59:22
Leonard Barsotan0:59:28
Justus Kipkogei Kangogo0:59:31
Callum Hawkins1:00:00
Philip Langat1:00:04
Wilfred Kimeli Kimitei1:00:12
Samson Gebreyohannes1:00:13
Stephen Sambu1:00:41
Diego Estrada1:00:51
Sam Chelanga1:01:04
Temesgen Daba Ejerssa1:01:08
Weldon Kirui1:01:10
Luke Puskedra1:01:29
Tsegay Tuemay1:01:38
Noah Droddy1:01:48
Isaac Mukundi1:02:26
Bernard Lagat1:02:33
Reid Coolsaet1:02:42
Kiya Dandena1:03:13
Edwin Kibichiy1:03:15
Andy Wacker1:03:26
Elkanah Kibet1:03:35
Brendan Gregg1:03:35
Jonas Hampton1:03:57
Kevin Castille1:03:58
Mohamed Hrezi1:04:00
Sid Vaughn1:04:03
Luis Orta1:04:14
Augustus Maiyo1:04:14
Jarrett LeBlanc1:04:19
Thomas Toth1:04:28
Geoff Martinson1:04:28
Sami Jibril1:04:30
Alex Monroe1:04:41
Tesfaalem Gebrearegawi1:04:45
Willie Milam1:05:16
Ryan Rutherford1:06:25
Blair Morgan1:06:40
Kevin Lewis1:06:53
Daniel Docherty1:06:57
Joe StilinDebut
Cam LevinsDebut
Riley CoatesDebut
Haron LagatDebut
Matt McClintockDebut
Daniel WallisDebut
Wade MeddlesDebut
Jemal YimerDebut

 

Women’s Half MarathonPersonal Best
Edith Chelimo1:05:52
Eunice Chumba1:06:11
Mary Wacera1:06:29
Helah Kiprop1:07:39
Molly Huddle1:07:41
Jordan Hasay1:07:55
Hiwot Gebrekidan1:08:00
Ruti Aga1:08:07
Lisa Weightman1:09:00
Yeshi Chekole1:09:13
Aliphine Tuliamuk1:09:16
Caroline Chepkoech1:09:52
Tigist Tufa1:10:03
Serena Burla1:10:08
Veronicah Maina1:10:20
Dibabe Kuma Lema1:10:47
Sasha Gollish1:11:05
Natasha Wodak1:11:20
Hillary Montgomery1:11:49
Buze Diriba1:11:49
Lindsay Flanagan1:12:05
Rachel Cliff1:12:07
Becky Wade1:12:18
Tracy Barlow1:12:48
Alia Gray1:12:48
Danna Herrick1:12:55
Leslie Sexton1:13:13
Jovana de la Cruz1:13:19
Allison Mendez-Cleaver1:13:21
Emily Setlack1:13:25
Kinsey Middleton1:13:30
Dylan Hassett1:14:09
Joanna Thompson1:14:10
Kelsey Bruce1:14:15
Katy Moen1:14:30
Karen Roa1:14:35
Cleo Boyd1:14:44
Emma Bates1:14:57
Emma Kertesz1:15:39
Christina Vergara1:15:43
Perry Shoemaker1:16:03
Obsie Birru1:16:13
Rosie Edwards1:16:25
Rachel Hyland1:16:59
Lyndsay Tessier1:17:00
Melanie Myrand1:17:12
Kyle Blakeslee1:17:21
Brittany Tretbar1:17:36
AnnMarie Kirkpatrick1:15:17
Sarah Attar1:31:41
Elaina BalourisDebut


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