Race also hosts 85th USA Men's Marathon Championship; guaranteed prize purse of $800,000; record field of 40,000 plus also expected for five borough spectacular
By Ryan Lamppa, Running USA wire
The ING New York City Marathon 2009, the 40th edition set for Sunday, November 1, has attracted an outstanding international field including defending champions Paula Radcliffe of Great Britain and Marilson Gomes dos Santos of Brazil and Jaouad Gharib of Morocco, Tatyana Petrova of Russia, Yuri Kano of Japan and Kenyans James Kwambai, Patrick Makau, Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot and Salina Kosgei, but the story this year is: Will an American man win the coveted race title?
No U.S. male has won the New York City Marathon since Alberto Salazar's three-peat in 1982. Three U.S. men have been runner-up since Salazar: Ken Martin in 1989, Bob Kempainen in 1993 and Meb Keflezighi, in 2004, just 70 days after his Olympic Marathon silver medal performance; the next year Keflezighi returned and finished third.
With Olympians and sub-2:11 marathoners Keflezighi, Ryan Hall, Abdi Abdirahman and Brian Sell in the field, the U.S. has a contingent who have a realistic chance that one of them will join Salazar and four-time race champion Bill Rodgers at the top of the podium.
At Thursday's press conference for the top U.S. men, 2008 Olympian Jorge Torres, who is making his marathon debut at New York, said, "We're here for one mission and one mission only: to show America that we've made it to the top."
The storied 26.2 mile race will also host the 85th USA Men's Marathon Championship and along with the aforementioned, other top Americans vying for top places and the national title include Jason Lehmkuhle, Josh Moen, Bolota Asmerom, Fasil Bizuneh and Dan Browne. The national championship prize purse totals $150,000 with $40,000 for the national champion.
The weather forecast for Sunday's race is showers with a temperature range of 40-50F.
The ING New York City Marathon will be presented live on Universalsports.com at 9:00am EDT. In addition, NBC Sports will televise the 40th edition on Sunday, November 1 at 2:00pm EST. NBC Sports commentator Al Trautwig will be joined in the broadcast booth by veteran race journalist Toni Reavis with NBC Sports' Jimmy Roberts hosting the expanded two-hour recap show.
For more race information including athlete bios, race history, videos and more, go to: www.INGnycmarathon.org.