The Hague, The Netherlands - Four men with sub-60 minute credentials will headline the ABN-AMRO City-Pier-City Half Marathon on 11 March.
The race, which goes from The Hague to Scheveningen and back, will celebrate its 38th edition.
Jonathan Kiplimo Maiyo is the fastest of the four Kenyan sub-60 entrants. The 24-year-old has a personal best of 59:08 and recently threatened his own PB with a 59:27 run at the Great North Run in South Shields, England, last September. More recently, Maiyo also made a very strong impression in the Marathon in Dubai in late January after running a personal best of 2:04:56 and finishing fourth for a massive eight-minute improvement over the distance.
His countryman Geoffrey Kamworor Kipsang, just 19, is a dangerous contender with a personal best of 59:31. Kenneth Kiprop Kipkemoi (27), with a personal best of 59:47 and Leonard Langat (21) who has run 59:52 are the other two who have broken the one hour mark over the 21.1Km distance.
A disappointment for the organisers was the withdrawal of Leonard Patrick Komon. The World record holder for 10Km and 15Km, and the second fastest ever over 10 Miles, informed Race Director Mario Kadiks on Sunday that he sustained a hip injury which has hindered his preparation. Komon had targeted a third World record In Den Haag but promised to make it next year.
Known as a fast course, the top five finishers last year all finished in under one hour. In a thrilling sprint, Ethiopian Lelisa Desisa won in 59:37 beating compatriot Azmeraw Bekele by two seconds.
The oranisers have not yet announced the women's field.
More than 33,000 runners are expected over several distances. Nearly one third of them will run the Half Marathon.
Wim van Hemert for the IAAF