WITH JUST THREE DAYS TO GO, THE STANDARD CHARTERED SINGAPORE MARATHON HAS ANNOUNCED ITS MOST COMPETITIVE FIELD OF ELITE ATHLETES TO DATE.
This year’s elite field is the most diverse in the event’s history, boasting a total of 55 athletes from 18 different countries, regions or territories, more than double the 2018 field.
The competitive pedigree of the field has seen a significant increase with 2015 World Championships Marathon silver medalist, 2018 Ottawa Marathon Champion and Fukuoka Marathon silver medalist Yemane Tsegay (ETH) taking on defending champion Joshua Kipkorir (KEN). Other notable runners who will be making their Singapore debut include 10,000m Asian Games Champion Hassan Chani, 2018 Commonwealth Games Silver medalist Solomon Mutai of Uganda, and Kenyan Eliud Kiptanui.
Speaking ahead of his Singapore Marathon debut, Yemane Tsegay said, “It will be different racing at night, I have changed my training and been doing some longer runs at 6pm at home in Addis Ababa as part of my build up. The start time should make things cooler this year so I’m hoping to be competitive and challenge for the title.”
2018 Women’s elite champion Priscah Cherono (KEN) will return to defend her title against quality competitors, including compatriot and last year’s runner-up Stella Barsosio (KEN), as well as the 2019 Sydney Marathon Champion and bronze medalist in the 2017 New York City Marathon, Mamitu Daska (ETH). Together, both the male and female elite runners will compete for the total marathon open category prize pool of $244,000 USD.
As Southeastern Asia’s only IAAF Gold Label event since 2012, race organisers are confident that the refinements will result in improved performances for all runners. Geoff Meyer, Managing Director for The IRONMAN Group’s Asia region said, “We’ve got an incredibly competitive field this year, and the evening flag-off will be a plus for runners from all categories. The large field of past winners from other significant running races vying for glory here, really speaks to the growth of the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon and puts us in good stead as a candidate race for the Abbott World Marathon Majors.”
The elite Wheelchair Marathon category returns for its second consecutive year with a field of 16 elite wheelchair athletes, the biggest to date. Making a return this year is 2018 SCSM Champion Kota Hokonuie (JPN), who will look to duplicate his performance from last year and take this year’s top spot. Hokonuie will face stiff competition from Sho Watanabe (JPN), 2016 Tokyo Marathon Champion and Joshua George (USA), three-time winner of the Chicago Marathon (2004, 2006, 2014) and 2015 London Marathon Champion. In the women’s race, Australians Madison de Rozario and Eliza Ault-Connell have both returned to fight it out for gold, having finished second and third in SCSM 2018 respectively. Both women are strong favorites and in top condition after strong performances at the World Para Athletics Championships in Dubai earlier this month.
The three-day event from 29 November – 1 December celebrates the sport of running beneath Singapore’s iconic skyline. Runners in the Marathon and Half-Marathon categories will flag off in several waves beginning at 6.00 p.m. on Saturday, 30 November, running through iconic places in the heart of Singapore.