Kenya's Kelvin Kiptum lunges to the finish line as he wins men's elite race at 2023 London Marathon in London. [Xinhua]

Kelvin Kiptum and Sifan Hassan will line up at the 45th Chicago Marathon this evening against defending champions Ruth Chepng'etich and Benson Kipruto.

Chepngetich won last year's race in 2:14:18 - which, at the time, was the second-fastest performance in history and just 14 seconds shy of the then world record. The 2019 world champion returns to Chicago on the hunt for her third consecutive victory in the Windy City.

She won the Nagoya Marathon earlier this year in 2:18:08, and more recently she clocked 1:06:18 at the Buenos Aires Half Marathon.

Victory today would make Chepngetich the first woman to win the Chicago Marathon three times. But in order to do that, she will have to defeat Hassan, the double Olympic gold medallist.

Hassan made her marathon debut in London in April when, despite stopping to stretch twice, she closed a 25-second gap on the leaders to win and set a national record of 2:18:33.

She took a break from her marathon training to race on the track at the World Championships in Budapest, where she contested three distances and came away with two medals, taking silver in the 5000m and bronze in the 1500m. It will be more than just a two-woman race, though.

Joyciline Jepkosgei, winner of the 2021 London Marathon and 2019 New York City Marathon, will make her Chicago debut. She started the year off well with a 1:04:46 half marathon personal best in Barcelona, but she had a disappointing run at the Boston Marathon, where she finished 12th.

Tadu Teshome is the second-fastest woman in the field. The Ethiopian set her PB of 2:17:36 at last year's Valencia Marathon, having won in Barcelona and Riyadh in her previous races over the distance.

Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia - who broke several world records on the track, indoors and out - made her marathon debut in Amsterdam last year, clocking 2:18:05. She started this year's London Marathon but did not finish, so she'll be out for redemption in Chicago.

Compatriot Sutume Kebede was another non-finisher in London, but she is a 2:18:12 performer at her best, and has made it on to several marathon podiums in the past, so cannot be discounted.

Other notable Ethiopian competitors include this year's London Marathon runner-up Megertu Alemu and 2019 Chicago runner-up Ababel Yesheneh.

Emily Sisson finished runner-up last year in 2:18:29, demolishing the North American record by 43 seconds. She went on to set a continental half marathon record of 1:06:52 in Houston earlier this year.

The US contingency also features Olympic bronze medallist Molly Seidel, 2018 Boston Marathon champion Des Linden and 2021 Chicago runner-up Emma Bates.

A regular podium finisher in major marathons over the past two years, Kipruto won the men's race last year in 2:04:24, the fourth fastest time ever in Chicago. He contested the Boston Marathon earlier this year and achieved another podium finish, placing third in 2:06:06. He returned to Boston two months later and raced over 10km, setting a personal best of 28:39.

Kiptum will be making his US marathon debut in Chicago and longs to break the course record of 2:03.45 set by Dennis Kimetto in 2013. After running 2:01:53 on his debut at the distance in Valencia last year, Kiptum won this year's London Marathon in 2:01:25, the second-fastest time in history and just 16 seconds shy of the world record.

Ethiopia's Seifu Tura - winner in Chicago in 2021 and runner-up last year - will return for the third consecutive year, looking for another podium finish.

His last race was at the London Marathon where he finished fifth in 2:06:38. His PB of 2:04:29, set at the 2021 Milan Marathon, makes him the sixth-fastest man in the field.

Kenya's John Korir was third in Chicago last year in a personal best of 2:05:01, and he'll be looking to at least match that performance, if not improve on it.

Kelvin Kiptum and Sifan Hassan will line up at the 45th Chicago Marathon this evening against defending champions Ruth Chepng'etich and Benson Kipruto.

Chepngetich won last year's race in 2:14:18 - which, at the time, was the second-fastest performance in history and just 14 seconds shy of the then world record. The 2019 world champion returns to Chicago on the hunt for her third consecutive victory in the Windy City.

She won the Nagoya Marathon earlier this year in 2:18:08, and more recently she clocked 1:06:18 at the Buenos Aires Half Marathon.

Victory today would make Chepngetich the first woman to win the Chicago Marathon three times. But in order to do that, she will have to defeat Hassan, the double Olympic gold medallist.

Hassan made her marathon debut in London in April when, despite stopping to stretch twice, she closed a 25-second gap on the leaders to win and set a national record of 2:18:33.

She took a break from her marathon training to race on the track at the World Championships in Budapest, where she contested three distances and came away with two medals, taking silver in the 5000m and bronze in the 1500m. It will be more than just a two-woman race, though.

Joyciline Jepkosgei, winner of the 2021 London Marathon and 2019 New York City Marathon, will make her Chicago debut. She started the year off well with a 1:04:46 half marathon personal best in Barcelona.

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