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Meb, Shalane & Mainer True Head US Field at B2B

Top American Distance
Runners Meb Keflezighi, Shalane Flanagan and Maine Native Ben True Lead Stellar
World-Class Field for 2014 TD Beach to Beacon 10K

 

Kenyans Micah Kogo
and Joyce Chepkirui also returning to defend titles at Aug. 2 road race in
coastal Cape Elizabeth

 

CAPE
ELIZABETH, Maine

(July 14, 2014) ‰ÛÓ Boston Marathon champ Meb Keflezighi will join a
talented, deep group of American distance runners ‰ÛÓ including Olympic medalist
Shalane Flanagan and Maine native Ben True ‰ÛÓ for the TD Beach to Beacon
10K Road Race on Aug. 2 in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.

 

Both of the defending
champions ‰ÛÓ Kenyans Micah Kogo and Joyce Chepkirui ‰ÛÓ also are returning
to headline a 30-runner professional field dotted with Olympians, World Champs
and record setters, TD Beach to Beacon
organizers announced Monday.

 

“We
put together a solid American contingent last year, but I think this one is
even stronger, especially on the women’s side, where a number of
Americans are capable of sub 33s,” said Larry Barthlow, the elite athlete
coordinator for the TD Beach to Beacon. “On the men’s side, favorite
son Ben True is making his return to Maine with his sights set on winning the
race and he certainly is more than capable. But there also are a handful of
international runners who will have something to say about that. We’re
set up for another great race day.”

 

Prize
money for the winner of the men’s and women’s races is $10,000. In
all, nearly $60,000 in prize money will be awarded to the top finishers and
place winners in the various categories for men and women. Northeast Delta
Dental also is providing a $2,500 bonus to any runner who breaks an open course
record.

 

The
world-class athletes will join a race day field of more than 6,200 runners who
will wind along the fast, relatively flat course that begins near the Crescent
Beach State Park entrance on Route 77 in Cape Elizabeth and ends 6.2 miles
later in Fort Williams Park at the Portland Head Light, the most photographed
lighthouse in America.

 

Fresh
off his poignant win at the 2014 B.A.A. Boston Marathon, Meb Keflezighi
is likely to be the most recognizable face among the sea
of runners. As the world watched in the aftermath of the 2013 bombings, he
pushed to an emotional victory (2:08:37) to become the first American to win at
Boston since 1983. At 38, he was the race’s oldest male winner since
1930.

 

The charismatic Keflezighi, who turned 39 in May, is the
first American man in history to win the New York and Boston marathons and an
Olympic medal ‰ÛÓ he won silver at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. He also
placed 4th at 2012 London Games.

 

His impressive sub-28:00 at the 2007 TD Beach to Beacon
(27:58) was good enough for fourth in a strong field ‰ÛÓ the highest ever
placing for an American man in Cape Elizabeth. He placed 5th in the
race last year.

 

Shalane Flanagan also will
arrive in Maine following a record setting performance in the Boston Marathon.
She charged to the lead and held on for 19 miles before being overtaken and
ultimately finishing seventh in a personal record 2:22:02 ‰ÛÓ the fastest
time ever recorded by an American woman in Boston’s 118-year history. She
is now the third fastest female American marathoner ever, after Deena Kastor
and Olympic champion Joan Benoit Samuelson, founder of the TD Beach to Beacon.

 

Flanagan, 33, who grew up in Marblehead, Mass., is
returning to the TD Beach to Beacon for the first time since high school. In
the years since, she has set American records in the 3000m (indoor), 5000m
(indoor), 10,000m and 15K road race, won the bronze in the 2008 Olympics at
10,000m, finished second at the 2010 New York Marathon and won the 2012 U.S.
Olympic Trials. Flanagan is presently training for the fall marathon season,
with her stated goal to run a sub 2:20.

 

North
Yarmouth, Maine native Ben True is also set to make a triumphant return
to the TD Beach to Beacon. He last ran the race in 2009, shattering the Maine
Resident course record (29:10) and placing 10th overall. Soon
thereafter, the former All-American at Greely High School and Dartmouth College
moved to Oregon to focus on his professional running career.

 

True,
now 28, returns to Maine in top form. He turned heads last August when he
battled TD Beach to Beacon champ Micah Kogo to the finish at the 2013 Falmouth
Road Race to place second, which capped off a year in which he placed sixth at
the World Cross Country Championships ‰ÛÓ the highest finish for an
American since 1995 ‰ÛÓ and narrowly missed making the U.S. team for the
World Championships by finishing fourth in both the 5000m and 10,000m at the
USA Track & Field Championships.

 

So
far this year, True has won the USA 15K Championship at the Gate River Run for
the second year in a row, and in May set a personal best 13:02.74 for a gritty
win in the 5,000m at the Payton Jordan Invitational at Stanford. Now a member
of the Saucony Elite Racing team and training in New Hampshire, he has a
personal best 27:41.17 at 10,000m.

 

But
True has his work cut out for him if he wants to win a TD Beach to Beacon Open
title.

 

Returning
champ Micah Kogo, 28, of Kenya, an Olympic bronze medalist at 10,000m,
has utilized his track speed to win the TD Beach to Beacon in two of the past
three years ‰ÛÓ 28:03 in 2013 and 27:47 in 2011. He once ran 27:01 in a 10K
road race to set a world record and finished second (2:10:27) in his marathon
debut at the 2013 Boston Marathon.

 

Another
28-year-old Kenyan and former TD Beach to Beacon champ, Stanley Biwott,
also is in the field. He won with a time of 27:59 in 2012. He placed second at
the London Marathon (2:04:55) earlier this year and in 2013 recorded the 10th
fastest half marathon time in history (58:56).

 

Other
contenders include: Bedan Karoki, 23, a Japan-based Kenyan who finished
fifth at 10,000m at the 2012 London Olympics and recorded an impressive sub-27
on the track at the Prefontaine Classic in May (26:52.36); Patrick Makau,
a 29-year-old Kenyan who is a former world record holder in the marathon
(2:03:38) and two-time Berlin Marathon champ whose 58:52 half marathon in 2009
is one of the fastest ever; and Emmanuel Bett, 29, of Kenya, a
late-blooming elite athlete who made his professional debut in 2010 and in 2012
displayed blazing track speed by recording the fastest 10,000m in the world for
the year ‰ÛÓ 26:51.16.

 

Other
top American men in the field include Fernando Cabada, Chris Solinsky,
Taylor Gilland and Michael Eaton.

 

On the women’s
side, in addition to Flanagan, Joyce Chepkirui, 25, is expected to make
a strong bid for her second straight win against a solid field of athletes.
Last year, the African Cross Country champ arrived in Maine with a chip on her
shoulder after being left off the Kenyan national team for the IAAF World
Championships. She set the pace early and maintained a lead throughout,
finishing in 31:23.

 

Her
win in Maine set off a chain of road race victories last fall, including a
personal best 30:37 at the 2013 ASICS Grand 10 in Berlin, the fastest-ever 10K
on German soil. In April, she set her personal best (1:06:19) and a course
record at the Prague Half Marathon.

 

Chepkirui’s
closest challenger last year also is back. Gemma Steel, 28, of Great Britain,
recorded a personal best 31:26 to stay within striking distance. She duplicated
that second-place performance at the Falmouth Road Race a week later.

 

Also
in the mix will be Emily Chebet, a 28-year-old Kenyan who was the runner
up at the 2012 TD Beach to Beacon (31:52) by .6 of a second. She is a two-time
winner of the IAAF World Cross Country Championships and has a personal best
31:18 at 10K.

 

A
pair of Ethiopians also will push the pace. Tadelech Bekele, 23,
finished a few steps behind Chepkirui at the Berlin 10K last fall in a personal
best 30:38, and 29-year-old Aselefech Meriga is one of the top all-time
marathoners (2:19:31) who won bronze at the 2009 IAAF World Championships.

 

Two
top-10 finishers from the 2013 TD Beach to Beacon also are back in the race. Diane
Nukuri-Johnson
, 29, is a two-time Olympian from Burundi (she competed in
her first Olympics at age 15 at the 2000 Sydney Games) who ran a personal best
32:35 to finish eighth last year. Nukuri-Johnson won her second straight Bay to
Breakers in May. Alexi Pappas, 24, a five-time All American at Dartmouth
and Oregon, made her professional road racing debut at the 2013 TD Beach to
Beacon, finishing 10th in a personal best 32:55.

 

Other
top Americans in the field include Desiree Linden, who finished 10th
at the 2014 Boston Marathon; Megan Hogan, who has a PB 32:34 at 10K; Kate
DeCamillo
, the second American finisher at the 2013 New York City Marathon;
Blake Russell, a member of the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team; Frances Koons,
a nine-time All-American at Villanova; and Jen Rhines, a three-time U.S.
Olympian whose 32:21 at the 2003 TD Beach to Beacon is the third-fastest ever
for an American woman in the event.

 

The
TD Beach to Beacon 10K is directed by Dave McGillivray of DMSE Sports (www.dmsesports.com),
who also directs the B.A.A Boston Marathon and is regarded as one of the best
in the business.

 

This
year marks the 17th year for the TD Beach to Beacon 10K, which filled online in
less than five minutes and is considered one of the gems on the U.S. road race
circuit. In 2013, a record setting 6,244
­­­­­­ runners from 16
countries, 39 states and more than 250 Maine cities and towns finished the
scenic 6.2-mile course. The race debuted in 1998 with 2,408 runners crossing
the finish line.

 

The
2014 race beneficiary is Rippleffect (www.rippleffect.net), a Portland-based non-profit
youth and community development organization leading outdoor adventure programs
on Cow Island, in area schools and in the mountains of western Maine. The
organization will receive a check for $30,000 from the TD Charitable Foundation,
the charitable giving arm of TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®.

 

In
addition to the TD Charitable Foundation, other major corporate partners
include Hannaford, Nike, Poland Spring, Fairchild Semiconductor, IDEXX,
Northeast Delta Dental, MaineHealth, Dead River, Olympia Sports and WCSH6. For
additional information about the race, visit www.beach2beacon.org,
call the race hotline at (888) 480-6940 or find the race on Facebook
and Twitter.

 

About
the TD Charitable Foundation

The
TD Charitable Foundation is the charitable giving arm of TD Bank N.A., which
operates as TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, and
is one of the 10 largest commercial banking organizations in the United States.
The Foundation’s mission is to serve the individuals, families and businesses
in all the communities where TD Bank operates, having made $118.9 million in
charitable donations since its inception in 2002. The Foundation’s areas
of focus are affordable housing, financial literacy and education, and the
environment. More information on the TD Charitable Foundation, including an
online grant application, is available at www.TDBank.com.

 

About
TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®

TD
Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank, is one of the 10 largest banks in the U.S.,
providing more than 8 million customers with a full range of retail, small
business and commercial banking products and services at approximately 1,300
convenient locations throughout the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Metro D.C., the
Carolinas and Florida. In addition, TD Bank and its subsidiaries offer
customized private banking and wealth management services through TD Wealth®,
and vehicle financing and dealer commercial services through TD Auto Finance.
TD Bank is headquartered in Cherry Hill, N.J. To learn more, visit www.tdbank.com.
Find TD Bank on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TDBank and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/TDBank_US.

 

TD
Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank, is a member of TD Bank Group and a
subsidiary of The Toronto-Dominion Bank of Toronto, Canada, a top 10 financial
services company in North America. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades on the New
York and Toronto stock exchanges under the ticker symbol “TD”. To
learn more, visit www.td.com.

 

#  #  #

 

 

Elite
Athlete Fields for the 2014 TD Beach to Beacon 10K (as of July 14, 2014,
subject to change)

 

MEN

Micah
Kogo
                
Kenya

Meb
Keflezighi             
USA

Ben
True
                     
USA

Patrick
Makau              
Kenya

Stanley
Biwott
             
Kenya

Bedan
Karoki
              
Kenya

Fernando
Cabada          USA

Sammy
Chelanaga        Kenya

Emmanuel
Bett             
Kenya

Chris
Solinsky              
USA

Taylor
Gilland
              
USA

Michael
Eaton              
USA  

 

WOMEN

Joyce
Chepkirui           
Kenya

Shalane
Flanagan          USA

Emily
Chebet   
            Kenya

Tadelech
Bekele            Ethiopia

Aselefech
Meriga          Ethiopia

Gemma
Steel
              
Great Britain

Diane
Nukuri Johnson    Burundi

Alexi
Pappas 
             
USA

Desiree
Linden             
USA

Hanae
Tanaka  
            Japan

Kaho
Tanaka 
              
Japan

Megan
Hogan              
USA

Kate
DeCamillo            
USA

Blake
Russell 
             
USA

Frances
Koons             
USA

Jen
Rhines 
                 
USA  

 

Top
photo is Race Founder Joan Benoit Samuelson greeting Meb Keflezighi after he
crossed the finish line at the 2013 TD Beach to Beacon 10K.

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