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Haile Gebrselassie to Run Tokyo Marathon

http://www.asahi.com/sports/spo/TKY201010300131.html
http://yamagata-np.jp/news_core/index_pr.php?kate=Sports&no=2010102901000569
http://hochi.yomiuri.co.jp/sports/etc/news/20101029-OHT1T00317.htm
http://mainichi.jp/select/today/news/20101030k0000m050034000c.html

translated and edited by Brett Larner

On October 29 the organizing committee of the Tokyo Marathon announced that world record holder Haile Gebrselassie (37, Ethiopia) has committed to running the 2011 Tokyo Marathon in late February. Gebrselassie set the current men's marathon world record of 2:03:59 at the 2008 Berlin Marathon. Tokyo will be his second marathon in Japan, having won the 2006 Fukuoka International Marathon.

335,000 people applied for the 35,000 spots in the 2011 Tokyo Marathon. Committee executive Tadaaki Hayano commented, "We hope everybody in the race feels the energy of the greatest running in the world."

The 2011 Tokyo Marathon will be one of the selection races for the Japanese men's marathon team at the 2011 World Championships, meaning many of the country's best runners will also be lining up. Last year's race featured a first-place prize of 8,000,000 yen [$100,000 USD at current exchange rates] and a world-record bonus of 30,000,000 yen [$375,000 USD]. Although the Tokyo Marathon has had poor luck with weather in its four editions to date, the course record of 2:07:23 marks it as an outstanding high-speed course. Should the course record fall the winner will receive a bonus of 3,000,000 yen [$37,500 USD].

Update: Read the official press release here.

Comments

Brett Larner said…
This is a surprise. I guess this means Arata Fujiwara already has his NYCM rematch lined up then.
Scott Brown said…
I wonder how Tokyo fits into his schedule if indeed he's still aiming for a Gold in London 2012?

Seems a bit close to New york to be racing again but I think these guys don't operate by the same rules as blodders like me.

Do you think Sammy might turn up in Tokyo too? If not the "Osaka Marathon 2011" might want to get him to balance things out a bit. Can't have big brother getting all the attention ;)
Brett Larner said…
I was wondering the same thing re: Geb in the Olympics. I think this means he's going to run the marathon at the World Champs next year. I can't see him doing another spring marathon--3 hard ones in 6 months at his age doesn't seem realistic. Plenty of time, though, between Tokyo and the WC. Running the WC seems like the logical prep for London '12, and I'm sure he'd like a WC marathon gold for the collection before he wraps things up.

Not sure what it means for his plans for NYCM, though, although it and Tokyo are about as far apart as Berlin and Dubai, I think. I'm sure he would receive a very handsome bonus for breaking Kebede's all-comers' record in Tokyo. Mimura is no doubt delighted as well.

Hard to see Sammy being there. He said he was aiming for Dubai, which also might be part of Geb in Tokyo.
Brett Larner said…
Forgot to add: if the yen holds up the way it has been the last few months then all Tokyo prize & appearance money is worth +20%. Mika and I were just talking a few days ago about how that would make next year's race very attractive for overseas elites.
Martin Verdier said…
I wonder how HE got in, Japanese or English website?
Anonymous said…
I´m thrilled to read about this. After the report on Noguchi`s return to competitive running again some great news on this blog. Thanks.

Joe

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