The Wall Street Journal carried a story today that the three Americans who lined up for the Olympic marathon a couple of weeks ago, will all be racing in the New York City marathon on 4 November. I suppose this is not remarkable news, given that the New York marathon is one of the biggest races in the world – with huge publicity for US runners – and total prize money which now exceeds $850,000 and includes a new pot of $100,000 to be divided between the top 5 American male and female finishers.
But I guess I was slightly surprised that all three of the Olympic marathoners would be there. It is widely assumed that in the lucrative non-Championship races, elite athletes will try to avoid coming up against fierce rivals too often and in addition to that, for at least one of the American trio, this is his third marathon in 2012 (chapeau, Meb!) which is quite a lot of stress on the body at that level.
I suspect that the New York win will again go to an east African runner. But whatever happens on that front, the crowds in New York are in for a treat – their three best domestic marathoners duelling it out for the honour of being the first American to cross the line in Central Park. And for two of them, there is a right to be wronged as Ryan Hall and Abdi Abdirahman both failed to finish in London. That is an intriguing proposition.