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US Men’s Olympic 26.2 Team to Run NYC 10K

U.S. Men’s Olympic Marathon Team‰ÛÓMeb Keflezighi, Ryan Hall, and Abdi Abdirahman‰ÛÓto Compete at UAE Healthy Kidney 10K on May 12

 

Powerhouse trio will chase $25,000 first-place prize‰ÛÓthe largest of any 10K in the world‰ÛÓin pre-London matchup

 

New York, April 3, 2012‰ÛÓIn an
unprecedented gathering of the entire U.S. Men’s Olympic Marathon team
prior to the Olympic Games, Meb Keflezighi, Ryan Hall, and Abdi
Abdirahman will run the UAE Healthy Kidney 10K on Saturday, May
12, it was announced today by New York Road Runners president and CEO
Mary Wittenberg.

 

Keflezighi won the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials
in Houston on January 14, finishing in a personal-best time of 2:09:08.
Hall, the defending Olympic Trials champion, finished second in 2:09:30.
Abdirahman secured the third and final Olympic
qualifying spot in 2:09:47, his fastest marathon since 2006. All three
will be chasing a $25,000 first-place prize at the UAE Healthy Kidney
10K, the largest winner’s purse in any 10K race in the world.

 

“We’re thrilled to welcome three of America’s
finest long-distance runners and perennial New York favorites to the
eighth annual UAE Healthy Kidney 10K,” said Wittenberg. “It’s the first
time NYRR will host a complete Olympic men’s marathon
team prior to the Games, and we couldn’t be more excited to be a part
of this talented trio’s road to London.”

 

After winning the marathon Trials earlier this
year, Keflezighi, 36, of Mammoth Lakes, CA, was the top American in the
NYC Half in March, placing 13th in 1:01:41. In 2009, he became the first
American since Alberto Salazar in 1982 to win
the New York City Marathon. He has finished in the top 10 in the ING
New York City Marathon a total of six times, most recently with a
sixth-place finish in 2011. A silver medalist in the marathon at the
2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Keflezighi is a three-time
USA cross country champion (2001, 2002, 2009) and has won more than 20
USA titles in his career. This is his second appearance at the UAE
Healthy Kidney 10K; he finished third in 2005, the race’s inaugural
year. 

 

“I love to compete in New York City,” said
Keflezighi. “I am excited to once again be a part of the elite field for
the UAE Healthy Kidney 10K. This race has become one of the premier 10K
events in the world. NYRR always does a great job
of assembling great American and international fields. It will be nice
to participate in this event with my U.S. Olympic teammates, Ryan and
Abdi.”

 

Hall, 29, of Big Bear Lake, CA, qualified for
his second Olympic Games at this year’s marathon Trials. He won the 2008
Trials in New York City in November 2007 and went on to finish 10th in
Beijing. In 2011, Hall ran the fastest marathon
ever by an American at the Boston Marathon, finishing fourth in
2:04:58. He is the only American to have broken the one-hour barrier in
the half-marathon, which he did by running 59:43 to win the 2007 Houston
Half-Marathon. In addition to the Olympic Trials,
Hall found success in New York when he won the 2006 USA Cross Country
Championships 12K, and also in his first appearance in the NYC Half in
2009, when he finished third.

 

“Anytime I get the chance to race in New York
City I get excited,” said Hall. “The added bonus of racing my first race
in my buildup to the Olympic Marathon, and the fact that it will be the
first time Meb, Abdi, and I have raced together
since the Olympic Marathon Trials, puts my excitement through the roof.
I’ve followed the UAE Healthy Kidney 10K results every year and looked
forward to the year when I could run it myself. The road to London
starts here.”

 

Abdirahman, 35, of Tucson, AZ, became a
four-time Olympian by finishing third in the marathon Trials earlier
this year. He is also a four-time USA 10,000-meter champion (2001, 2005,
2007, 2008). Abdirahman ran the NYC Half 2007 in 1:00:29,
which is currently the third-fastest half-marathon ever run by an
American. He finished second behind Haile Gebrselassie’s course record.
He finished fifth in 2:11:24 at the ING New York City Marathon 2005.
Abdirahman has earned 13 USA Championships at 10,000
meters, 10K, 10 miles, and 20K. This is his fourth appearance at the
UAE Healthy Kidney 10K.

 

“I’m excited to come back to New York for the
UAE Healthy Kidney 10K,” said Abdirahman. “It’s a great event and it
supports a great cause. I’m looking forward to seeing my Olympic
teammates Meb and Ryan; running against them always brings
out the best in me.”

 

The eighth annual UAE Healthy Kidney 10K offers
something for everyone‰ÛÓthrilling performances from some of the world’s
top athletes, a fast course for runners chasing personal records, a
great cause to inspire them all, and fantastic giveaways
including a technical shirt for every registered entrant and exciting
raffle prizes. Held over Central Park’s rolling hills, the race is
sponsored by the Embassy of the United Arab Emirates and will begin at
8:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 12, on Central Park’s
West Drive near 62nd Street. For more race details, please visit
http://www.nyrr.org/run-with-us/uae-healthy-kidney-10k
.

 

About NYRR

New
York Road Runners was founded in 1958 when a small group of passionate
runners vowed to bring running to the people. Over the past 53 years,
NYRR has grown from
a local running club to the world’s premier community running
organization. NYRR’s mission is to empower everyone, of all ages and
abilities‰ÛÓbeginners and competitive athletes, the young and the elderly,
adult professionals and underserved schoolchildren‰ÛÓto
improve their health and well-being through the power of running and
fitness.

 

NYRR’s
races, community events, instruction and training resources, and youth
programs give hundreds of thousands of people each year the motivation,
know-how, and
opportunity to start running and keep running for life. NYRR’s premier
event, the famed ING New York City Marathon, attracts the world’s top
pro runners and committed amateurs alike while also raising millions of
dollars annually for charity and driving economic
impact for the City. But NYRR is equally committed to the runners of
tomorrow, passionately providing youth fitness programs that educate and
inspire more than 100,000 kids in underserved communities in New York
City, all 50 states, and around the world.

 

Headquartered
in New York City, NYRR implements a unique nonprofit model that teams
contributed and earned income to make all its efforts possible. To learn
more,
please visit
www.nyrr.org.

 

About United Arab Emirates Embassy

The
United Arab Emirates (UAE) Embassy in Washington, DC sponsors the
annual “Healthy Kidney 10K Run” in New York City’s Central Park.  The
race brings together an
international field of professional and amateur runners.   Last year
over 10,000 people participated in the race, which benefitted the
National Kidney Foundation, including top-ranked professional runners
and a delegation of athletes from the UAE.  The race
is organized by the New York Road Runners in cooperation with the UAE
Embassy and held in honor of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan,
the first President of the UAE.  Sheikh Zayed was treated for kidney
disease in the United States, and benefited
from the expertise, knowledge and professionalism of US institutions
and doctors.  In this regard, the Healthy Kidney 10K race highlights two
key UAE government initiatives: sports and health. Officials from the
UAE Embassy, the UAE Permanent Mission to the
United Nations and the UAE Armed Forces Officers’ Club attend the
event, serving as honorary race starters, and congratulating the top
finishers.

 

The UAE Embassy is honored to be a part of this
important event, and to help raise awareness of kidney disease.  Through
the continued efforts of the National Kidney Foundation, people around
the world are being educated on the importance
of prevention and treatment options.  The Healthy Kidney 10K honors
those efforts, and also serves as a tribute to American excellence in
kidney transplantation.

 

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