Thursday, April 12, 2012

Mutai and Kilel Will Defend Their Titles in Boston

The Olympics later this summer are playing an extensive role in upcoming Boston Marathon.  Our US Olympic Marathon team was determined at the Trials in Houston on January 14 of this year (see my posts here).  Those on the team will be sitting out any marathon competiton (including Boston), along with those elite athletes who ran the Olympic Marathon Trials who are planning to try for a spot at a different distance event at trials in June.

But this week and next will decide the Olympic team for the Kenyans, with top Kenyan runners in Rotterdam this Sunday, Boston on Monday, and London next Sunday.  Last year's Boston winners were Kenyans Geoffrey Mutai and Caroline Kilel, and both are back to not only win again but earn their places on the Olympic team.  They will have much competition (a good thing IMHO, as it makes everyone better!) with a field including 2010 Boston winner Robert Cheruiyot, 2010 NYC winner Gebre Bebremariam, 2011 Amsterdam and Rotterdam winner Wilson Chebet, Chicago 2nd place finisher Wesley Korir, and Chicago 3rd place finisher Bernard Kipyego, on the men's side; and on the women's side 2011 Boston 3rd place finisher Sharon Cherop, 2011 Boston 4th place finisher Caroline Rotich, 2011 NYC winner Firehiwot Dado, and 2011 NYC 2nd place finisher Buzunesh Deba.

A note here about Geoffrey Mutai...   his win in Boston last year in a time of 2:03:02, though the fastest marathon time in history, is not recognized as a world record by the IAAF.  From Wikipedia:
In order for a performance to be ratified as a world record by the IAAF, the marathon course on which the performance occurred must be 42.195 kilometers and measured in a defined manner using the calibrated bicycle method and meet other criteria that rule-out "artificially fast times" produced on courses aided by downhill slope or tailwind. The criteria include:
  • "The start and finish points of a course, measured along a theoretical straight line between them, shall not be further apart than 50% of the race distance."
  • "The decrease in elevation between the start and finish shall not exceed an average of one in a thousand, i.e. 1m per km."
The Boston Marathon course is a point-to-point race, meaning it can be wind-aided (which it was last year), and it has a slight overall downhill slope.

Mutai not only won Boston in record time last year, he also broke New York's record time in last November's NYC Marathon (2:05:55), making him the only person ever to win both Boston and New York in one year.

Following are videos of Mutai and Kilel's wins in last year's Boston Marathon:

1 comment:

  1. I'm going to be a volunteer at next weeks London Marathon , a lot of volunteers for the Olympics will be "practicing" for all the events in London later in the year.
    I have a little team of 6 that I will be supervising at the 10km mark.


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