Evans Cheruiyot and Bernard Kipyego Join 2011 Bank of America Chicago Marathon Field

By: Bank of America Chicago Marathon
September 14, 2011

2008 Champion Evans Cheruiyot Returns to Chicago After Two-Year Injury Layoff; 2011 Race Could Be One for the Record Books

CHICAGO -- The Bank of America Chicago Marathon today announced several additions to its elite field that figure to spearhead the elite pack and push a potential world-record  pace  on October 9.

On the men’s side, 2008 Bank of America Chicago Marathon champion Evans Cheruiyot is back to regain his title and will face off against fellow Kenyan Bernard Kipyego, the silver medalist at the 2009 IAAF World Half-Marathon Championships. They will be joined by sub 2:06 athletes Bazu Worku (2:05:25) and Getu Feleke (2:05:44) of Ethiopia.

The women’s elite field welcomes Ethiopian aces Atsede Habtamu Besuye, the 2009 Berlin Marathon winner, and Askale Tafa, champion of the 2007 Dubai and Paris Marathons.

“These athletes round out an elite field that is not only dynamic, but has the potential to attack the record books. If the weather is good, there could be some reshuffling of not just the Bank of America Chicago Marathon records, but also the list of all-time fastest certified marathons,” said Executive Race Director Carey Pinkowski. “You’re looking at a field that is not going to be afraid to push the pace with a mix of young, fearless athletes, and seasoned performers who have tasted victory and success at the marathon distance.”

After capturing the 2008 Bank of America Chicago Marathon title in a personal best 2:06:25, Cheruiyot was sidelined by injuries in 2009 and 2010, but he resurged at the 2011 Dubai Marathon with a runner-up finish. Kipyego is a half-marathon specialist with a 59:10 personal best and a silver medal from the 2009 IAAF World Half-Marathon Championships. He ran 2:07:01 in his debut at the 2010 Rotterdam Marathon and turned in a 1:00:09 tune-up race in warm conditions at the Lille Half-Marathon in France on September 3. They will be joined by fellow Kenyan Dickson Kiptolo Chumba, the 2011 Rome Marathon champion.

Worku brings the third fastest personal best to the men’s field behind Kenya’s Moses Mosop (2:03:06) and America’s Ryan Hall (2:04:58). As an 18-year-old, Worku became the fastest teenager to cover 26.2 miles after his 2:06:16 debut at the 2009 Paris Marathon. He improved his time to 2:05:25 the following year in Berlin. Feleke won the 2010 Amsterdam Marathon in a course record 2:05:44. Ethiopians Bekana Daba, the 2011 Houston Marathon winner and course record holder (2:07:04), and Terefe Maregu will also be on the start line.

After serving as a pacer-maker at the 2010 Bank of America Chicago Marathon, Ireland’s Martin Fagan returns to contest the full distance. The Irish national record holder in the half-marathon (1:00:57) will aim for John Treacy’s Irish record of 2:09:15. Australia’s Shawn Forest will make his marathon debut after running a half-marathon personal best of 1:01:25 (No. 6 all-time for Australia) in the spring.

Besuye ran a personal best 2:24:47 to score a World Marathon Major victory at the 2009 Berlin Marathon, which she followed up with another win at the 2010 Eindhoven Marathon. Besuye ran 1:08:29 at the 2007 World Half-Marathon Championships at age 19—the fastest ever by a teenager. Tafa’s personal best of 2:21:31 ranks second in the women’s elite field behind two-time defending champion Liliya Shobukhova of Russia, and she has a wealth of WMM experience with top five finishes at the Boston, London and Berlin Marathons.

Ethiopia’s Belainesh Zemedkun Gebre, an up-and-comer who won the 2010 Honolulu Marathon in her debut and ran 1:09:17 at the Prague Half-Marathon in March, and Cruz Nonata da Silva, one of the top Brazilian distance runners, were also added to the women’s field.


Elite Men

Moses Mosop
Ryan HalL
Bazu Worku 
Getu Feleke 
Evans Cheruiyot           
Marilson Dos Santos 
Bernard Kipyego         
Bekana Daba           
Atsushi Sato                 
Joshua Chelenga      
Wesley Korir              
Dickson Kiptolo Chumba 
Terefe Maregu         
Takayuki Matsumiya   
Takashi Horiguchi      
Kouji Gokaya    
Joseph Chirlee    
Hironori Arai          
Masaki Shimoju
Jason Gutierrez         
Yuuki Moriwaki       
Martin Fagan         
Shawn Forrest     


KEN
USA
ETH 
ETH 
KEN
BRA
KEN
ETH
JPN
KEN
KEN
KEN
ETH
JPN
JPN
JPN
KEN
JPN
JPN
COL
JPN
IRL
AUS


2:03:06
2:04:58
2:05:25
2:05:44
2:06:25
2:06:34
2:07:01
2:07:04
2:07:13
2:08:21
2:08:24
2:08:44
2:09:03
2:10:04
2:12:05
2:12:07
2:12:10
2:12:17
2:12:18
2:13:24
2:13:34
2:14:06
Debut

Elite Women

Liliya Shobukhova 
Askale Tafa   
Inga Abitova  
Benita Willis 
Wei Yanan  
Maria Konovalova     
Christelle Daunay
Atsede Besuye
Yue Cao             
Belainesh Gebre              
Kayoko Fukushi      
Cruz Nonata da Silva


RUS
ETH
RUS
AUS
CHN
RUS
FRA
ETH
CHN
ETH
JPN
BRA


2:20:15
2:21:31
2:22:19
2:22:36
2:23:12
2:23:49
2:24:22
2:24:26
2:29:50
2:32:13
2:40:52
Debut

About the Bank of America Chicago Marathon
In its 34th year and a member of the World Marathon Majors, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon annually attracts 45,000 participants, including a world-class elite runner and wheelchair field, and an estimated 1.7 million spectators. As a result of its national and international draw, each year, the iconic race assists in raising millions for a variety of charitable causes while generating $170 million in economic impact to its host city according to a report by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Regional Economics Applications Laboratory (R.E.A.L.). The 2011 Bank of America Chicago Marathon will start and finish in Chicago’s Grant Park beginning at 7:30 a.m. on October 9. In advance of the race, a two-day Health & Fitness Expo will be held at McCormick Place Convention Center on October 7-8.

 

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