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Posted: April 23, 2009  : Add to Mixx!

Athletics: Universal Sports To Broadcast London Marathon

TV and Live Online Coverage of Marathon Begins This Sunday at 9 a.m. ET

LOS ANGELES -- APRIL 21, 2009 -- The men's and women's marathon gold medalists from the Beijing Olympic Games headline the field as Universal Sports presents live online and same-day television coverage of the 2009 Flora London Marathon, part of the World Marathon Majors series. Live global webcast begins this Sunday at 4 a.m. ET at with television coverage on Universal Sports beginning Sunday at 9 a.m. ET.

COVERAGE ON UNIVERSAL SPORTS: Universal Sports, available in 45 million homes, will present same-day coverage of the London Marathon.

Date Event Time (all times ET)
April 26 LONDON MARATHON 9 -- 11 a.m.

COVERAGE ON UNIVERSALSPORTS.COM: will provide a live global webcast of the race. More information, as well as highlights, full-length videos, photos, breaking news and more available at
Date Event Time (all times ET)
April 26 LONDON MARATHON (LIVE) 4 -- 7:10 a.m.

WORLD MARATHON MAJORS: Universal Sports is the broadcast home to the World Marathon Majors (WMM) which include the Boston Marathon, London Marathon, Berlin Marathon, Chicago Marathon, and will conclude with the New York City Marathon in November. In addition to broadcasting the WMM, Universal Sports will also provide coverage of the Los Angeles, Stockholm, and Beijing Marathons, starting at the end of May.

ABOUT THE RUNNERS: Defending champion Martin Lel of Kenya won the London marathon in 2005, 2007, and 2008, and hopes to become the first man to win four London marathons in his career. If Lel wins this marathon, he will also become only the second man in history to win three marathons consecutively.

The London Marathon is known for having a flat course and a place for setting personal, national, and world records. When Lel won in 2008, the 30-year-old runner set a course record of 2:05:15, making him the fourth-quickest marathon runner ever.

This year, one of Lel's many challenges will be defeating Beijing Olympic gold medalist, 22-year-old fellow Kenyan Samma Wanjiru. Wanjiru finished second at the London Marathon last year, only nine seconds behind Lel. Also competing is two-time World Champion and Beijing Olympic Silver medalist Jaouad Gharib of Morocco and Beijing Olympic Bronze medalist Tsegaye Kebede of Ethiopia.

On the women's side, Beijing Olympic gold medalist, Constantina Tomescu Dita, will be racing against four-time Boston Marathon winner, Catherine Ndereba. Ndereba attempted to compete in the Boston Marathon again this year, but was told there was no room for her to compete. Instead, she will be facing Dita and many other strong runners in this year's London marathon.

ABOUT UNIVERSAL SPORTS: Universal Sports, a partnership between NBC Sports and InterMedia Partners, serves as the preeminent multiplatform destination for Olympic-related and lifestyle sports programming available on television and online. Universal Sports is a 24-hour television channel available in 45 million television households in markets including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., San Diego, San Francisco, Denver, Seattle, Las Vegas, Indianapolis, Reno and Omaha. Major world championship and Olympic qualifying events found on Universal Sports range from track and field, skiing, swimming, gymnastics, marathons and cycling, to volleyball, rowing, triathlon, fencing, speed skating and martial arts. delivers an immersive experience via live and on-demand competition coverage, interaction with top athletes through blogs and in-depth access to Olympic sports news and information year round. For more information on the availability of the Universal Sports 24-hour television channel, please visit

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