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Posted: August 17, 2021:  

(RRW) Athletics: Chicago Marathon Runners Must Show Proof Of Vaccination Or Negative COVID Test

From David Monti, @d9monti
© 2021 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved.

(17-Aug) -- Organizers of the 2021 Bank of America Chicago Marathon announced today that all of the race's 35,000 entrants must show proof of full vaccination or a negative COVID test within 72 hours of the race in order to participate. The race, scheduled for Sunday, October 10, is the first of the "big six" races of the Abbott World Marathon Majors (AWMM) to require vaccination or a negative COVID test. The other AWMM events scheduled for the fall --Berlin, Boston, London, Tokyo and New York-- have not announced vaccination or testing requirements, although Boston Marathon organizers said last March that participants "may be expected to produce up to two negative COVID-19 tests" prior to the race.

PHOTO: Sara Hall winning the 2021 NYRR New York Mini 10-K (photo by Jane Monti for Race Results Weekly)

According to a statement, the race defines "fully vaccinated" as individuals who are two weeks after their second dose in a two-dose vaccine series (like Moderna or Pfizer) or two weeks after a single-dose vaccine (like Johnson & Johnson). Runners will not be allowed to enter the Abbott Health & Fitness Expo to pick up their numbers without providing valid proof of their vaccination status or the negative COVID test.

The decision by the Chicago organizers follows a similar plan announced by the Utica Boilermaker 15-K, scheduled for the same day in Utica, N.Y., which is requiring all entrants to be fully vaccinated.

Reaction to today's announcement was mostly positive across social media.

"Big events like sports, concerts, mass participation are all now doing this," commented Canadian coach Rhys Spencer via Twitter. "The unvaccinated must feel like smokers did back in late 80s/early 90s and as it should be."

"I really hope any combination of vaccine proof, masks (except when running), social distancing where possible, and negative tests keep all the events happening," wrote an anonymous commenter on the message board. "I do not necessarily want or think we need all of that, but it is preferable to not holding the events."

In addition, Chicago organizers announced their elite athlete fields. Surprisingly, their women's race only has one African entrant, reigning world champion Ruth Chepngetich of Kenya who dropped out of the recent Olympic Marathon. The rest of the women's elite field --with a few exceptions-- are American led by Sara Hall and Keira D'Amato. Hall is hoping to break Deena Kastor's American record of 2:19:36 set in London in 2006.

The men's elite race has a full complement of African men led by Ethiopians Getaneh Molla and Seifu Tura who have personal best times of 2:03:34 and 2:04:29, respectively. The top American is Galen Rupp who won the race in 2017 and most recently finished eighth in the Olympic Marathon in Tokyo.

"We are excited to welcome so many outstanding athletes to Grant Park this fall," said executive race director Carey Pinkowski through a statement. "While we expect to see fast times up front, we are focusing on celebrating every athlete in this year's field and the personal stories, challenges, and triumphs that they bring with them. This event is special in so many ways because it captures the human spirit, from the first runner across the line to the last."

The full elite fields are below.

The 2020 Bank of America Chicago Marathon was cancelled due to the pandemic. As such, the 2021 race will be the 43rd running.

2021 Bank of America Chicago Marathon - Elite Fields (with personal best times):

Ruth Chepngetich, KEN, 2:17:08 (Dubai, 2019)
Sara Hall, USA, 2:20:32 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
Keira D'Amato, USA, 2:22:56 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
Emma Bates, USA, 2:25:27 (Chicago, 2019)
Diane Nukuri, USA, 2:27:50 (London, 2015)
Lindsay Flanagan, USA, 2:28:08 (Chicago, 2019)
Bria Wetsch, USA, 2:29:50 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
Vianey De La Rosa, MEX, 2:30:04 (Valley NE, 2021)
Michelle Lee, USA, 2:30:31 (Sacramento, 2018)
Alia Gray, USA, 2:30:41 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
Bridget Lyons Belyeu, USA, 2:31:00 (Sacramento, 2018)
Daiana Ocampo, ARG, 2:31:33 (Vienna, 2020)
Rosie Edwards, GBR, 2:31:56 (London, 2021)
Jane Bareikis, USA, 2:33:54 (Duluth, 2021)
Chirine Njeim, LBN, 2:36:40 (Dorena Lake, 2021)
Georgia Porter, USA, 2:36:52 (Frankfurt, 2019)
Anne-Marie Blaney, USA, (DNF, 2020 Olympic Trials)
Megan O'Neil, USA, Debut
Olivia Pratt, USA, Debut
Carrie Verdon, USA, Debut
Jessica Watychowicz, USA, Debut
Getaneh Molla, ETH, 2:03:34 (Dubai, 2019)
Seifu Tura, ETH, 2:04:29 (Milan, 2021)
Hassan El Abbassi, BRN, 2:04:43 (Valencia, 2018)
Shifera Tamru, ETH, 2:05:18 (Dubai, 2019)
Joel Kimurer, KEN, 2:05:19 (Milan, 2021)
Eric Kiptanui, KEN, 2:05:47 (Siena, 2021)
Laban Korir, KEN, 2:05:54 (Amsterdam, 2016)
Galen Rupp, USA, 2:06:07 (Prague, 2018)
Fikre Bekele, ETH, 2:06:27 (Seoul, 2019)
Masato Kikuchi, JPN, 2:07:20 (Otsu, 2021)
Derlys Ayala, PAR, 2:10:11 (Valencia, 2020)
Ivan Gonzalez, COL, 2:11:07 (Valencia, 2020)
Emmanuel Roudolff-Levisse, FRA, 2:11:20 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
Colin Mickow, USA, 2:11:22 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
Wilkerson Given, USA, 2:11:44 (Chicago, 2019)
Wily Canchanya, PER, 2:12:33 (Prague, 2021)
Chris Derrick, USA, 2:12:50 (Chicago, 2017)
Josh Izewski, USA, 2:13:15 (Sacramento, 2018)
Mike Sayenko, USA, 2:13:34 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
Nico Montanez, USA, 2:14:07 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
John Tello, COL, 2:14:19 (Lima, 2021)
Sid Vaughn, USA, 2:14:28 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
Alan Peterson, USA, 2:14:45 (Chandler AZ, 2020)
Dan Kremske, USA, 2:14:53 (Chicago, 2019)
Brett Lustgarten, USA, 2:17:18 (Sacramento, 2018)
Kurt Roeser, USA, 2:17:59 (Sacramento, 2018)
Oscar Medina, USA, 2:18:45 (Chicago, 2019)
Reed Fischer, USA, 2:24:48 (Atlanta, 2020)
Clayton Young, USA, 2:29:46 (Atlanta, 2020)
Abdisamed Abdi, USA, Debut
Ben Kendell, USA, Debut
Ian Lamere, USA, Debut
Zach Panning, USA, Debut
Gonzalo Parra, MEX, Debut
Tatyana McFadden, USA, 1:31:30 (Duluth MN, 2019)
Amanda McGrory, USA, 1:33:13 (Boston, 2017)
Jenna Fesemyer, USA, 1:37:02 (Duluth MN, 2019)
Madison De Rozario, AUS, 1:39:22 (Chicago, 2017)
Vanessa De Souza, BRA, 1:45:19 (Oita, 2018)
Michelle Wheeler, USA, 1:45:55 (Oita, 2018)
Yen Hoang, USA, 2:01:06 (Boston, 2019)
Samantha Rhodes, USA, Debut
Marcel Hug, SUI, 1:18:04 (Boston, 2017)
Josh Cassidy, CAN, 1:18:25 (Boston, 2012)
Aaron Pike, USA, 1:20:59 (Duluth MN, 2019)
Daniel Romanchuk, USA, 1:21:36 (Boston, 2019)
Rafael Botello, ESP, 1:22:09 (Boston, 2017)
Jordi Madera, ESP, 1:22:10 (Boston, 2017)
James Senbeta, USA, 1:24:27 (Boston, 2017)
Krige Schabort, USA, 1:26:04 (Boston, 2002)
Sho Watanabe, JPN, 1:26:22 (Seoul, 2017)
Brent Lakatos, CAN, 1:29:41 (Berlin, 2018)
Brian Siemann, USA, 1:27:00 (Boston, 2017)
Johnboy Smith, GBR, 1:29:44 (Berlin, 2017)

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