The field also includes Priscah Jeptoo and Gemma Steel.
It sure didn't hurt the Kenyan men.
MB: Priscah Jeptoo: Kenyans lost in London because the pace was too slow, "we don’t even train at the pace we were running"
Former champs Mary Keitany, Priscah Jeptoo and Edna Kiplagat and HM WR holder Florence Kiplagat take on Dubai champ Aselefech Mergia and 2014 World #1, Tirfi Tsegaye.
Half WR holder Florence Kiplagat says her focus is on winning rather than time.
Half way into the race, Farah was dropped from the lead pack, but he hung tough and got the super-impressive win in 59:32 over Micah Kogo. Rose Chelimo won the women's race in 1:08:22.
Farah has said he's only going for the win, but the race is offering $100,000 for a world record and Zersenay Tadese set the current WR of 58:23 on this course in 2010. Kenya's Stephen Kibet (58:54 PR) and Ethiopia's Guye Adola (59:06 PR, bronze at '14 World Half Champs) could be tempted to push the pace with that sort of prize money.
"I am still on the path to reclaim my past glory. Since coming from maternity leave, it is always a challenge to be at the top of the game. But winning in [at RAK] will be a priority, though I hear my colleague Priscah (Jeptoo) is angling for the world record. My focus is to do well in marathon."
2013 champ Priscah Jeptoo and world half marathon record holder Florence Kiplagat join Edna Kiplagat and Keitany to form what race organizers have dubbed "the Fantastic Four." NYC runner-up Jemima Sumgong and Berlin runner-up Feyse Tadesse should also contend as part of a field that includes six women who have broken 2:21. This will also be the final marathon for British legend Paula Radcliffe.
We discuss the return of Priscah Jeptoo, wonder how fast the women could go and say goodbye to Paula Radcliffe.
After a 7 month break, she was dominant at the 15km Zeven Heuvelen Loop race in the Netherlands.
Molly Huddle got another big win to bring her prize money total to $128,000 in 2014, collegian Brian Shrader (born at 7,000 feet of altitude) turned heads by beating the pros at the .US 12k Champs, Priscah Jeptoo showed she's on her way back, and Duke did not show anything.
Registration was down to 17,000 from 23,000 last year and well short of the 25,000 goal and the lead cars for the 10K took the men in the wrong direction. On another note, 2013 London and NYC marathon champ Priscah Jeptoo finished 2nd in the women's 10K behind Faith Chemutai (35:52).
Also world 10,000 3rd placer Belaynesh Oljira and what we think is Stephanie Rothstein-Bruce's first race back since pregnancy. Men's side has Kenyan's Joel Kimutai and 26:51 10K man Emmanuel Bett,Commonwealth Games marathon champ Michael Shelley, Zane Robertson, GB’s Andy Vernon, Euro marathon champ Daniele Meucci and Ben Bruce.
Jeptoo is healthy now, but lost too much training time. They will be replaced by 2013 Boston champ Lelisa Desisa and Chicago Marathon runner-up Jemima Sumgong.