March 15, 2018
NEW YORK, March 15, 2018 – The world indoor marathon record could be broken for the third consecutive year at The Armory New Balance Track & Field Center on Saturday afternoon (March 17) in Washington Heights.
In the World Record Challenge signature portion of the Armory NYC Indoor Marathon Presented by New York Road Runners, five men and two women, all proven elite performers, will circle around the famed 200-meter banked track 211 times at The Armory with one goal: a world record.
Current world record holder and defending men’s champion Chris Zablocki is ready to improve on last year’s 2:21.48. So, too, are his top challengers.
“They told me my two biggest rivals (Malcolm Richards and Brian Harvey) were coming after they had finally convinced me to do this again,” said the 29-year-old Zablocki of Essex, Conn. “I really want to defend the record, but it’s quite uncertain.”
Richards, who won the inaugural Armory NYC Indoor Marathon with a world record time of 2:21.56, has defeated Zablocki twice: at the 2016 Olympic and by 16 seconds at last December’s U.S. Marathon Championship in Sacramento.
Both Harvey and Zablocki have taken turns surpassing each other. Harvey had better times in the Grandma’s Marathon in Duluth, Minn., and in the Boston Marathon, while Zablocki bested Harvey in the 2016 Olympic Trials, last October’s Hartford Marathon and last December’s U.S. Marathon Championship.
“There is even the possibility of being lapped by them if things don’t go well,” Zablocki said. “But I’ll do my best to prevent something that humiliating from happening.”
Eric Blake, owner of the Treadmill Marathon world record (2:21.40) and Nick Edinger, owner of a personal best 2:20.32 marathon, also will be in the hunt for the men’s title.
Lindsey Scherf is focused on last year’s women’s world-record time of 2:42.30 recorded at The Armory.
Scherf, who attended Scarsdale High School (NY) and continues to run for Coach Mike Barnow of Westchester Track Club, wants her reunion at The Armory to be the start of something monumental.
“I plan to try to qualify to participate in the Olympic Trials marathon and 10K,” said Scherf, whose competitive running career began at 11 at The Armory. “I’m aiming for a top-10 finish at the trials. I like chasing records that are both challenging and realistically obtainable for me.
“Chasing after the indoor marathon record is the perfect challenge level for me.”
In 2005, Scherf broke the American Junior record in the 10,000 meters and set the new course record in the Standard Charted Singapore Half Marathon in 2016 with a time of 1:14.29.
Scherf will be challenged by Ireland’s 2012 Olympian Caitriona Jennings, whose personal best is 2:36.11.
“My plan is to be patient,” Scherf added. “I have done the necessary work in my daily training to indicate that my fitness is where it needs to be to take down the record.
“Now, I need to execute on race day when it counts.”
The 2018 men and women’s winner of the World Record Challenge each will receive $3,000 (plus a $4,000 bonus for anyone who establishes a world record), while runner-up and third-place finishers earn $2,000 and $1,000, respectively. In addition, the 2018 NYC Indoor Marathon includes an added financial incentive of a $1,000 bonus for anyone who runs under the 2017 respective men’s and women’s world record.
It’s expected more than 100 relay teams – each team consisting up to eight runners – will participate in the Armory NYC Indoor Marathon Relayduring the March 16-18 event. Relay teams will compete for prize money, including $1,000 for fastest male, female and co-ed teams and a $1,000 bonus for any team that runs less than 2 hours.
The opening relay session begins at 2:30 p.m. on Friday followed by a 6 p.m. slot. Two marathon relay sessions are scheduled for Saturday, beginning at 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. On Sunday there will be 8 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. sessions.