Sunday, April 16, 2006

Haile is my homeboy - Boston / London preview

Edited to add a more complete list of elite athletes in the Boston Marathon. Make your pick! People who guess any race correctly get a free Jack-in-the-Box Antennae Ball.

4 miler this morning, and it was slow and rough, I think I was a little dehydrated, and it was late because I forgot to set the alarm again, and it was hot, but who cares about that stuff anyways.

The Boston Marathon is this Monday, April 17th, and there are some wicked fast people running it. A lot of people are speculating that this year, an American might actually win it, which would be the first time since 1983. Meb Keflezighi seems to be leading the way for an American recovery to distance running greatness, and I hope he can win it. You probably know about his silver medal in the Olympic marathon, and his second place finish at the NYC marathon, and his second place finish in the US Olympic trials - so he's good enough to be among the leaders at the end, but it always seems to come down to who is having a great day on race day.

Alan Culpepper, the U.S. Olympic trial champ, and Brian Sell, the 2006 U.S. Half Marathon Champion, along with Clint Verran, and 6 others from the Hanson-Brooks team will be there too.

Hailu Negussie, last years winner will be there to defend, as well as Robert Kipkoech and Timothy Cherigat, the winners from 2003 and 2004. And another Kenyan named Wilson Onsare, who has the fastest time of the whole field (2:06:47), and John Korir, who has won tons of road races, but this is his first marathon.

Elite women in Boston are Jelena Prokopcuka, Rita Jeptoo, Reiko Tosa, Bruna Genovese, and others.

And next week is the London Marathon, which has an even more impressive field. It's a shame that those folks won't come over and race each other in Boston instead. This race features: Tergat, Rutto, Limo, Baldini, Gharib, Lel, Rop, and the one and only Gebrselassie, and the return of Khalid Khannouchi. It's almost disgusting. And the women's race isn't looking too bad either, although supposedly Paula Radcliffe has dropped out with a foot problem : but I wouldn't be surprised if she surprised me and re-entered and ran it. But there's still Okayo, and Chepkemei, Petrova, Tomescu-Dita, and America's sweetheart Deena Kastor to keep an eye on.

So, how about your picks? Who will win it all in Boston and London? Keep in mind, that I didn't mention everybody. You should vote in comments, because the other polls that I sometimes have on here are anonymous, and no one would know if you won or not.

So, for the record, I'm picking my homeboy Haile Gebrselassie to win in London, and Chepkemei to win the women's race.

And I'd like to see Keflezighi break the streak and win Boston, and Reiko Tosa to win the women's race, even though I've never heard of her, but I dig Japanese chicks so I vote Tosa.

Keith out.

Men’s Open FieldPersonal Best
Wilson Onsare, Kenya2:06:47 (Paris, 2003)
William Kiplagat, Kenya2:06:50 (Amsterdam, 1999)
Tesfaye Tola, Ethiopia2:06:57 (Amsterdam, 1999)
Benjamin Maiyo, Kenya2:07:09 (Chicago, 2005)
Patrick Ivuti, Kenya2:07:46 (Chicago, 2005)
Julius Ruto, Kenya2:08:10 (Paris, 1999)
Hailu Negussie, Ethiopia2:08:16 (Hofu, 2002)
Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot, Kenya2:08:59 (Milan, 2002)
Timothy Cherigat, Kenya2:09:34 (San Sebastian, 2002)
Alan Culpepper, United States2:09:41 (Chicago, 2002)
Mebrahtom Keflezighi, United States2:09:53 (New York, 2004)
John Yuda, Tanzania2:10:13 (London, 2004)
Luc Krotwaar, Netherlands2:10:13 (Fukuoka, 2003)
Alirio Carrasco, Colombia2:12:09 (Chicago, 2003)
Brian Sell, United States2:13:22 (Chicago, 2004)
Clint Verran, United States2:14:17 (Chicago, 2002)
Kazuo Ietani, Japan
John Korir, KenyaDebut
Deriba Merga, EthiopiaDebut

Women’s Open FieldPersonal Best
Reiko Tosa, Japan2:22:46 (London, 2002)
Jelena Prokopcuka, Latvia2:22:56 (Osaka, 2005) NR
Derartu Tulu, Ethiopia (withdrawn)2:23:30 (Helsinki, 2005)
Rita Jeptoo, Kenya2:24:22 (Helsinki, 2005)
Elfenesh Alemu, Ethiopia (withdrawn)2:24:29 (London, 2001)
Alevtina Biktimirova, Russia2:25:12 (Frankfurt, 2005)
Zivile Balciunaite, Lithuania2:25:15 (Tokyo, 2005) NR
Olivera Jevtic, Serbia and Montenegro2:25:23 (Rotterdam, 2003) NR
Bruna Genovese, Italy2:25:35 (Tokyo, 2001)
Kiyoko Shimahara, Japan2:26:14 (Hokkaido, 2005)
Olesya Nurgalieva, Russia2:29:35 (New York, 2005)
Kutre Dulecha, Ethiopia2:30:06 (Amsterdam, 2005)
Tina Connelly, Canada2:34:43 (Sacramento, 2003)

2 comments: said...

Nice analysis.

I'd like to get an age group-by-age group pick for all Texas athletes before Monday morning.

We'll see if I can.

Way to go on the streak!


JoeC said...

The mind says an East African but the heart has me going with Boulder runner Alan Culpepper.