The World Cross Country Championships are in Kenya next month, followed by the Boston Marathon in mid April will star top American Deena Kastor, defending New York City champ Jelena Prokopcuka, and defending Boston champ Rita Jeptoo.
A week after Boston, the epically deep London Marathon field that will feature Americans Ryan Hall, Meb Keflezighi (2:09:53) and Khalid Khannouchi (2:05:38) will go after world-record holder Paul Tergat (2:04:55), and two-time Olympic champion Haile Gebrselassie (2:05:56), as well as Felix Limo (2:06:14); Martin Lel (2:06:41); Hendrick Ramaala (2:06:55); Jaouad Gharib (2:07:02); defending Olympic champion Stefano Baldini (2:07:22); Benson Cherono (2:07:58); Hicham Chat (2:07:59); defending New York City champ Marilson Gomes dos Santos (2:08:48); and Briton Jon Brown (2:09:31).
Outside of the Olympics the London field could be the deepest ever assembled.
But more than the spring marathons and big track meets, the news on a snowy Tuesday focuses on the autumn, specifically the two big races in New York City on the first weekend in November.
That’s where Lance Armstrong will take another crack at the New York City Marathon on Nov. 4. Last year, as was well documented, Armstrong completed the hilly NYC course in 2:59:36 thanks in part to being paced through by Alberto Salazar, German Silva, Joan Samuelson and Hicham El Guerrouj. Actually, Armstrong’s outing in New York was a big-time production magnified by a phalanx of security, famous Nike runners, and a pace car reporting his splits along with the equally ridiculous “Lance Cam.”
Meanwhile, Armstrong finished 856th.
Afterwards, Armstrong called marathoning much more difficult than cycling:
“I can tell you, 20 years of pro sports, endurance sports, from triathlons to cycling, all of the Tours – even the worst days on the Tours – nothing was as hard as that, and nothing left me feeling the way I feel now, in terms of just sheer fatigue and soreness.”
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