Massive 2:07:37 PB for Teshome Gelana in Houston (Victah Sailer) © Copyright
Gelana's best run to date was his surprise victory at the 2010 Houston Marathon where he clocked a 2:07:37 to take the 'man to beat' role at this IAAF Bronze Label Road Race.
Gelana's chief rivals include Kenyan Benson Cheruiyot who has a 2:11:33 career best from his runner-up position in Houston in 2009. The start list also includes Oleksandr Kuzin of Ukraine, who clocked a strong 2:07:33 in Linz, Austria, in 2007. He's been slowed by injuries since, but did clock 2:10:54 at the 2009 Venice Marathon where he finished fourth. The trio will be gunning for the 2:11:37 course record set by Moses Arusei of Kenya in 2006.
In the women's race, Ethiopian Desta Girma Tadesse, who clocked 2:32:10, at the Xaimen International Marathon in January, will be among the favourites. She'll be facing Svetlana Kouhan of Belarus who has clocked 2:32:18 and Helaria Yohannes of Namibia, who haa a 2:32:30 to her credit.
The women's course record of 2:28:22 was also set in 2006 by Souad Ait Salem of Algeria.
Conditions are expected to he warm on Sunday, but with a relatively cool 12 C in the forecast at the race start.
Bob Ramsak for the IAAF