Men's Contenders In Sunday's Fortis Rotterdam Marathon

Fortis Rotterdam Marathon - How Fast Will They Go In 2010?

April 7, 2010

Last year, the Fortis Rotterdam Marathon shook the world of marathoning, as James Kwambai and Duncan Kibet ran 2:04:27 and Abel Kirui was not far behind in 2:05:04. Later in the year, Kirui won the Marathon World Championship in Berlin but at the time, Kwambai, Kibet and Kirui were not big-name marathoners. They ended the year as the three fastest men of 2009.

We can't expect such fast times again in 2010. The men's field, however, is very accomplished and should make for a great race. The race will be streamed live for US viewers.

Here are our top 9 picks from the men's field. They include the 3rd-fastest man in marathoning history, the 2009 Boston runner-up, the 2009 4th-place finisher in Fukuoka, the 2010 RAK Half Marathon champion, the 2010 City-Pier-City Half Marathon champion, the 2009 World Half Marathon silver medal winner, an undefeated young marathoner and a man who ran 5 marathons and 5 half marathons in 2009.

James Kwambai, age 27, 2:04:27

Latest Results: 63 minute 2nd place half marathon in early February

Personal Bests: 59:09 (3rd, Rotterdam '09), 2:04:27 (2nd, Rotterdam '09)

Patrick Makau from KenyaPatrick Makau, age 25, 58:52, 2:06:14

Latest Results: 59:51 CPC The Hague Half Marathon win on March 14 preceded by 66 minute test run at Zayed half marathon in Abu Dhabi.

Personal Bests: 58:52 (RAK '09) and 2:06:14 (Rotterdam '09)

Makau is pictured, right, winning the City-Pier-City Half Marathon in March

Vincent Kipruto, age 22, 2:05:47

Latest Results: 61:43 half marathon (12th, Zayed, '10), 3rd in Chicago Marathon, 2:06:08 (really gave Wanjiru a run for his money before fading hard)

Personal Bests: 61:43 (12th, Zayed, '10), 2:05:47 (1st, Paris, '09)

IAAF World 1/2 Marathon

Bernard Kipyego, age 23, Marathon Debut, 26:59, 59:10

Latest Results: 7th at Kenyan XC Trials, 60:02 to get 6th at Rotterdam Half in March, World Half Marathon Silver ('09)

Personal Bests: 59:10, 4th in 2009 Rotterdam Half; 26:59 10,000m in 2007

(Kipyego is pictured right at World Half Marathon)

Jonathan Maiyo, age 22, 59:08, Marathon Debut

Latest Results: 64:45 in Abu Dhabi, 59:08 last September (4th)

Personal Best: 59:08

Feyisa Lelisa, age 20, 2 Wins In 2 Marathon Tries (Dublin and Xiamen)

Latest Results: 2:08:47 win in Xiamen Marathon on January 2, 2010

Personal Bests: 62:15 (2nd, Rock 'n' Roll Va. Beach, '09), 2:08:47 (1st, Xiamen, Jan. 2010)ING New York Marathon

Daniel Rono, age 31, 2nd in '09 Boston Marathon

Latest Result: 2:09:32, 2nd in 2009 Boston Marathon (his last recorded result in tilastopaja)

Personal Bests: 2:06:58 ('08), 60:27 ('08)

Geoffrey Mutai, 28, 2010 RAK Half Marathon Champion

Latest Results: 27:44 at World's Best, 59:43 Half Marathon win at RAK

Personal Bests: 59:30 (Valencia win, '09), 2:07:01 (Eindhoven win, '09)

Francis Kiprop, 27, 2nd in '09 Berlin Marathon

Latest Result: 6th in Eldoret XC race

Personal Best: 2:07:04 (2nd, Berlin, '09), 60:17 (3rd, Den Haag, '07)

Isaac Macharia, 29, Ran 10 Marathons and Half Marathons in 2009

Latest Results: Ran 5 2009 Marathons between 2:11 and 2:17. Ran 5 half marathons in 2009 between 62 and 65.

Personal Best: 2:07:16, 2nd, Dubai 2008; 60:48 in 2007 in New Delhi

Dereje Tesfaye, 24, 4th in December 2009 Fukuoka

Latest Results: 2:08:36 in Fukuoka, 12th at World Champs Half Marathon '09

Personal Bests: 60:02 (3rd, Den Haag, '09), 2:08:36 (4th, Fukuoka, '09)

Our Picks - Kwambai Gets It This Time

  • 1st: James Kwambai (his experienced coaches were bewildered when he didn't win New York last year)
  • 2nd: Bernard Kipyego (marathon debut goes well after battling Zersenay Tadese well in '09 world half)
  • 3rd: Vincent Kipruto (3rd in Chicago in '09 bodes well)
  • 4th: Patrick Makau (riding a patient, successful buildup and finishing speed)
  • 5th: Daniel Rono (we'd pick him higher in a hillier marathon, as he's been 2nd in Boston and 3rd in New York)


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