The LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon today announced
six additions to its elite field. The world-class competitors will
compete for a portion of the Race’s $650,000 prize purse, the largest
available in the sport, at its 29th running on Sunday, October 22.
2005 men’s champion Felix Limo (KEN) will defend his title alongside
four-time Chicago competitor Daniel Njenga (KEN) in the men’s field.
The 2004 LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon women’s champion Constantina
Tomescu-Dita (ROM) will be joined by Benita Johnson (AUS), Ludmilla
Petrova (RUS) and Galina Bogomolova (RUS) in the women’s field.
have historically attracted world-class athletes to The LaSalle Bank
Chicago Marathon and the 2006 event continues with that great
tradition,” commented Executive Race Director Carey Pinkowski. “The
elite field confirmed to compete in Chicago features some of the most
accomplished marathon runners in the world. We are expecting to see a
very fast and exciting competition on October 22.”
winning The 2005 LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon, Limo, 26, has taken an
early lead in the inaugural World Marathon Majors series with a 2:06:39
victory at the Flora London Marathon on April 23. In returning to
Chicago this fall, he will not only look to defend his title, but to
advance his position on the Majors leader board. With his recent London
victory, Limo is now a four-time marathon champion having also earned
titles at the 2004 real,- Berlin Marathon (2:06:44) and 2004 Rotterdam
Marathon with a personal best 2:06:14.
30, is no stranger to the Chicago course as 2006 will mark his fifth
consecutive LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon. Consistently finishing in
second or third in all prior Chicago appearances, Njenga has a keen
familiarity of the course where he set his personal record (2:06:16) in
a 2002 second-place finish.
women’s field will be led by The 2004 LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon
champion Tomescu-Dita, 36. After clocking her 2004 win in 2:23:45,
Tomescu-Dita returned in 2005 to set a personal best (2:21:30) while
challenging eventual champion Deena Kastor who earned her victory by
only a five-second margin.
Benita Johnson, 27, placed sixth in her marathon debut at the 2005
Flora London Marathon in 2:26:32. This fall will mark the first Chicago
appearance for the Australian 5,000m National Record holder (14:47,60).
15 finishes in the top 10 under her belt (6 ING New York City, 5 Flora
London, 2 Boston, 1 Olympic and 1 European Championship), Petrova, 38,
will make her Chicago debut this fall. In April she set the Russian
National Record with a 2:21:29 second-place finish at the Flora London
Marathon, breaking her personal best 2:22:33 which she set on that same
course in 2002. Petrova was the 2000 champion of the ING New York City
Marathon, earning the title with a 2:25:45 finish.
28, will compete in only her third marathon and her second World
Marathon Major this year when she arrives in Chicago this October. In
her marathon debut in December 2005, she placed second at the Las Vegas
Marathon finishing in 2:31:54. This spring, she shattered that time by
nearly 10 minutes, placing fifth at the Flora London Marathon in
2:21:58. An experienced track runner, Bogomolova won the 2003 World
Championships 10,000m in Paris, clocking a personal best 30:26,20.
LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon course has been home to several World and
U.S. Records during its 28-year history. Steve Jones of Great Britain
(2:08:05–1984), Khalid Khannouchi of Morocco (2:05:42–1999), Kenyan
Catherine Ndereba (2:18:47–2001) and Great Britain’s Paula Radcliffe
(2:17:18–2002) have each experienced World Record success in Chicago.
Americans Joan Benoit Samuelson (2:21:21–1985), Jerry Lawson
(2:10:04–1996, 2:09:35–1997), David Morris (2:09:32–1999) and
Khannouchi (2:07:01–2000), who became a U.S. citizen in 2000, have each
set new U.S. Records while competing in Chicago.
29th running of The LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon will take place on
Sunday, October 22, beginning and ending in Chicago’s historic Grant
Park. The Race will feature 40,000 registrants and expects more than
1.5 million spectators along its course. For more information, visit
the Race website, chicagomarathon.com.