Jepchirchir is seeking another historic feat in New York race

Kenya's Peres Jepchirchir crosses the finish line to win women's New York City Marathon last year. [File, AP]

Olympic marathon champion Peres Jepchirchir will defend her New York Marathon title on November 6.

Jepchirchir is the only athlete – male or female – to have won the Olympic, New York City, and Boston marathons, and is also a two-time world champion in half marathon.

“I’m very excited to return to New York to defend my title and run an even faster time at this year’s TCS New York City Marathon,” Jepchirchir said.

“As a mother and a role model, I’m also motivated to inspire the next generation of female runners as I race through the five boroughs and raise the bar for women everywhere.”

Last year, Jepchirchir won gold in the Tokyo Olympic marathon by 16 seconds, and then four months later won the 50th running of the TCS New York City Marathon in her US racing debut.

In doing so, she became the only Olympic marathon gold medalist to also win the TCS New York City Marathon in her career, finishing in 2:22:39, the third-fastest time in event history and eight seconds off the course record.

Then in April, in a back-and-forth race that came down to the final mile, Jepchrichir fended off Ethiopian Ababel Yeshaneh in a thrilling sprint to the finish to take the Boston Marathon title in her debut in the event.

The 2022 TCS New York City Marathon will return at full capacity with 50,000 runners on November 6.

The world’s largest marathon is one of the city’s most anticipated and iconic annual sporting events, attracting runners and spectators of all backgrounds, age, and abilities from around the world.

New York Marathon has shown no respect for Olympic champions. They include Frank Shorter, Stefano Baldini, Stephen Kiprotich and Joan Benoit Samuelson. Two-time Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge has not competed in the race.

American Frank Shorter, who won the gold medal in Munich in 1972 and the silver medal in 1976, finished second in New York in 1976, did not finish in 1977, was 12th in 1978, and seventh in 1979. Italian Stefano Baldini won the Olympic Marathon in Athens in 2004, then placed sixth in New York in 2006 and fourth in 2007.

Stephen Kiprotich of Uganda, the 2012 Olympic champion, finished 12th in New York in 2013 and fifth in 2014. Joan Benoit Samuelson, winner of the inaugural Olympic Marathon for women in Los Angeles in 1984, finished third in 1988 and sixth in 1991.

In 1988 Samuelson was tripped by a boy handing out cups of water which sent her tumbling.

Jepchirchir, who is the only sibling in her family to take up athletics, said: “The course is not easy, but I will try my best. I know we have strong women. I am going to go and try my best to see how I am going to go to run. I know it’s not easy.”

Jepchirchir, twice the world half-marathon champion and world 21km record holder for women’s-only race, produced a brilliant showing at the Olympic Games to became just the second Kenyan woman to win the Olympic Marathon title.


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