Jon Brown is adamant he can brush away the injuries and illnesses which have ruined his racing programme this year in Sunday's ING New York City Marathon. Brown after having missed both the World marathon and half marathon championship races this year believes he can finish a low key season on a high this weekend. The Canadian-based athlete after setting a personal best when finishing sixth in last April's Flora London Marathon, fully intended to challenge for the two major global titles later in the summer.
But injury forced him out of the World Championships marathon team and then a disappointing performance in the BUPA Great North Run saw him withdraw from the shorter race on October 1. The 34-year-old Prairie Inn Harrier said the Tyneside event took more out of him physically than he expected and felt he must concentrate fully on his New York preparations. "Training has gone fairly well for this one, not super great, but quite solid similar to London this year," where he lowered his personal best to 2:09:31 hours.
I should run competitively with the lead group
Brown born in Bridgend added: "After the Great North Run I came down with a cold but since then training has gone fine. "Three weeks ago I ran another half for training and ran a solo 63:55," which was only 11 seconds slower than in the highly competitive GNR where Zersenay Tadesse posted the the world's fastest-ever time. Brown who in his last New York appearance three years ago tore a calf muscle at the halfway point admitted: "It's always hard to know how a marathon will pan out. "But I feel like I'm in decent marathon shape so barring disaster, I should run competitively with the lead group."
Paul Tergat - recordholder from Berlin
Paul Tergat the world record holder and his fellow Kenyan Martin Lel the "Big Apple" race winner two years ago and in London this spring head an awesome field. But South Africa's defending champion Hendrick Ramaala and a host of other top marathon men will also fancy their chances in the Big City event.
Brown insisted: "You just never know how it will go in the later stages, but the NYCM course is a good one for me with it's hills. If I'm in the group after 16 miles then I should run well in the later stages."
John Mayock after a distingished track careeer will make his marathon debut and is hoping some hard work will pay off over the very tough course. "I've trained very hard for this race and I'm hoping I will do myself justice although really I don't know what to expect," said the former middle distance star. Mayock added: "It would be nice and it is my intention to perform well as quite a few people have doubted my ability to run a good marathon."Mark Carroll who in New York set his personal best of 2:10:54 when sixth behind Lel three years ago heads the Irish challenge.