New York, October 14, 2009 – Former World Marathon record holder Paul Tergat has pulled out of next month’s New York marathon with a leg injury.
Tergat who won the Big Apple race in 2005 has been unable to recover from the injury which also saw him withdraw from Lisbon half Marathon earlier this month.
Tergat’s withdrawal was tempered by news that four-time Boston Marathon champion Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot and 2009 Boston Marathon champion Salina Kosgei, have entered for the marathon which will be held on November 1.
“Like all Boston Marathon winners, Robert and Salina are proven champions,” said New York Road Runners president and CEO and race director Mary Wittenberg. “They’ll both be looking to join the elite few who’ve become champions of both races.”
Cheruiyot, 31, last competed in the New York City in 2005, finishing fourth in 2 hours, 11 minutes, and 1 second. Cheruiyot is the Boston course-record holder (2:07:14, his personal best).
Earlier this year, he dropped out of the Boston race after 35K due to back pain; he ran the IAAF World Championships Marathon in August in Berlin, finishing fifth (2:10:46).
Cheruiyot has five World Marathon Majors (WMM) race victories, having won the Chicago Marathon in 2006, and was the inaugural WMM series champion (2006¬–07).
Kosgei, 32, will make her second appearance at the New York; she finished fourth in 2005 in 2:25:30.
In April, Kosgei won the closest women’s race in the history of the Boston Marathon, crossing the finish line one second ahead of defending champion Dire Tune to win in 2:32:16.
In 2008, Kosgei finished fourth at the London Marathon and was 10th in the Olympic marathon in Beijing.
The course for this year’s race has been modified in Brooklyn at the Brooklyn Academy of Music at mile 8 and at McCarren Park at mile 12, in Queens coming off the Pulaski Bridge near mile 14, and in the Bronx just past mile 20.
Athletes will be vying for a total guaranteed prize purse of $800,000, the largest in race history.
In celebration of the 40th running of the New York City Marathon, a new champion’s bonus of $70,000 will be awarded to any past champion who wins this year, bringing a former champion’s first-place prize this year to $200,000.