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Strongest elite field set for good times on the Gold Coast this weekend

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This year’s Gold Coast Airport Marathon on Sunday (5 July) will assemble the strongest elite marathon running field in its 37-year-history, headlined by the return of the past two male winners Silah Limo from Kenya and Yuki Kawauchi from Japan.

Limo last year broke Rob de Castella’s long-standing Australian All Comers Record when he clocked 2:09:14 for victory at the Gold Coast, a race that doubled as his marathon debut. Limo’s performance rewrote the record books for the fastest time in Australia ever over the 42.195km distance.

Kawauchi finished third behind Limo in a creditable 2:11:27 after a spectacular mid-race fall cost him valuable time and momentum and ultimately ended his chances for the win.

Adding even more spice to a showdown this year, Kawauchi with a personal best a full minute faster than Limo, won the race in 2013 in 2:10:01, an equal race record that stood for 12 months until Limo came along and bettered the mark.

The history books could be rewritten once again with six elite men boasting times under the current course record (2:09:14) including sub-2:05 former world junior marathon record holder  Berhanu Tolcha from Ethiopia and 2011 Gold Coast Airport Marathon second placegetter Albert Matebor from Kenya.

Current world masters marathon record holder Kenneth Mungara (2:08:44), 2014 Mumbai Marathon winner Evans Ruto (2:07:49) and 2014 Brighton Marathon second placegetter Dominic Kimweitch (2:09:36) are three other Kenyans who have the potential to make it consecutive victories for their nation on the Gold Coast.

2013 third placegetter Tewelde Hidru from Eritrea and 2014 fifth placegetter Samuel Gebremichael from Ethiopia are major threats having experienced the flat and fast course first-hand while 2012 London Olympic marathoner Ryo Yamamoto from Japan knows how to handle the big occasions after racing the Tokyo Marathon earlier this year.

The Gold Coast Airport Marathon also doubles as the IAAF Oceania Area Marathon Championship for the eighth consecutive year with the fastest Australian debut marathoner and 2012 London Olympian Jeffrey Hunt taking on 2014 Australian marathon champion Rowan Walker and 2012 IAAF Oceania Area Marathon champion Jonathan Peters for the title.

The Gold Coast Airport Marathon women’s course record of 2:27:17 set by Japan’s Yukiko Akaba in 2013 will be in Ethiopian Makde Haji’s sights having already clocked a best time of 2:26:46 in recent years.

However, Japan’s dominance of the 42.195 kilometre race could continue with three women having recorded sub-2:32 personal best times recently. Risa Takenaka (2:28:09, 2015), Keiko Nogami (2:28:19, 2015) and Manami Kamitanida (2:31:34, 2014) all have the potential to become the 13th Japanese female to win Australia’s leading marathon.

2011 Australian marathon champion Kirsten Molloy (2:43:41) will go head-to-head with 2014 Christchurch Marathon winner Victoria Beck (2:43:45) from New Zealand in the IAAF Oceania Area Marathon Championship.

View the elite fields via goldcoastmarathon.com.au/race-weekend/elites

Confirmed International Field

Men
M1 Silah Limo (KEN) PB: 2:09:14 (2014)
M2 Yuki Kawauchi (JPN) PB: 2:08:14 (2013)
M3 Jeffrey Eggleston (USA) PB: 2:10:52 (2014)
M4 Berhanu Shiferaw Tolcha (ETH) PB: 2:04:48 (2013)
M5 Albert Matebor (KEN) PB: 2:05:25 (2011)
M6 Kenneth Mungara (KEN) PB: 2:07:36 (2011)
M7 Evans Ruto (KEN) PB: 2:07:49 (2012)
M8 Ryo Yamamoto (JPN) PB: 2:08:44 (2012)
M10 Samuel Woldeamanuel (ETH) PB: 2:08:45 (2010)
M11 Dominic Kimwetich (KEN) PB: 2:09:36 (2014)
M14 Tewelde Hidru (ERI) PB: 2:10:18 (2015)
M15 Jeffrey Hunt (AUS) PB: 2:11:00 (2011)
M16 Alphonce Felix Simbu (TAN) PB: Debut
M17 Shigeki Tsuji (JPN) PB: 2:13:41 (2014)
M18 Tomonori Sakamoto (JPN) PB: 2:13:49 (2015)
M19 Yoshinori Sugimoto (JPN) PB:2:14:11 (2013)
M20 Asamenew Yeshanew (ETH) PB: Debut
M21 Saeki Makino (JPN) PB: 2:17:59 (2015)
M22 Rowan Walker (AUS) PB: 2:18:01 (2010)
M24 Jonathan Peters (AUS) PB: 2:20:05 (2012)
M26 Shota Atsuchi (JPN) PB: 2:21:36 (2015)
M27 Takemaru Yamasaki (JPN) PB: 2:23:21 (2013)
M28 Tony Payne (AUS) PB: 2:24:55 (2015)
Women
M53 Makda Haji (ETH) PB: 2:26:46 (2012)
M54 Risa Takenaka (JPN) PB: 2:28:09 (2015)
M55 Keiko Nogami (JPN) PB: 2:28:19 (2015)
M56 Zebenay Gebre Moges (ETH) PB: 2:31:14 (2009)
M58 Manami Kamitanida (JPN) PB: 2:31:34 (2014)
M60 Shoko Shimizu (JPN) PB: 2:32:43 (2013)
M62 Riona Ishimoto (JPN) PB:2:38:26  (2014)
M64 Fumiko Hashimoto (JPN) PB: 2:40:46 (2015)
M66 Kirsten Molloy (AUS) PB: 2:43:43 (2011)
M67 Victoria Beck (NZL) PB: 2:43:45 (2010)
M73 Yumiko Tanaka (JPN) PB: 2:56:32 (2014)

 

The Gold Coast Airport Marathon will be held on Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 July in one of the most popular holiday destinations in the world in Queensland, Australia.

It is set to attract more than 27,000 participants of all ages and abilities across a number of events including the Gold Coast Airport Marathon, Wheelchair Marathon, ASICS Half Marathon, Wheelchair 15km, Southern Cross University 10km Run, Suncorp Bank 5.7km Challenge and Junior Dash 4km & 2km races.

To enter or for more information visit goldcoastmarathon.com.au

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