The 2017 race is about an hour from starting. I thought that we would catch up. It is already 65 degrees on the course, and will probably be 70-75 degrees when most people finish. It is always time to hydrate on a hot day.
For Galen Rupp the hotter the better, as the slower the race, the better that the Olympic bronze medalist will do. Also, the slower the pace, the longer Meb Keflezighi will stay in the race. It also should be pretty good for Jared Ward, who runs well in most conditions. I never count out Abdi Abdirhaman, who took third in NYC last fall. Shadrack Biwott is a fine athlete, continuing to develop, watch for him in this hot and humid race today. Canadian Eric Gillis is in the thick of things, and a 2:11 here will place him in top 6 or 7.
On the women’s side, Blake Russell has the experience. I think she can run in top ten. Where will Jordan Hasay go? I think she could be top three. This may be the year for Desi Linden, who knows this course from the front and back.
The Kenyan and Ethiopian athletes who are here will be amazing. The defending champions are here. Atsede Baysa ran an amazing last three miles to win, and with the heat, this race should play to her strengths. On the men’s side, Lehi Hayle is here and with conditions coming in hot, this could be a Lehi’s race.
Think about David McKenzie and Roberta Gibb, who won the men and women’s races in 1967. They will be grand marshals today. The race has come a long way. From 1928 to 1968, the longest women’s race was an 800 meters in the Olympics. The first Olympic marathon for women was in 1984, and the first AAU champs for women was in the early 1970s. Last year, 12,166 of the 14,112 women starters finished the race, or 96.3 percent. Women are just under 47 percent of the field in 2017.
Now it’s off to social media coverage, so watch our coverage on runblogrun.com.