Stephen Sambu to Debut at Chicago Marathon

Stephen Sambu to Make His 26.2-Mile Debut at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon
Sambu Holds the Record for the World‰Ûªs Fastest 8K

CHICAGO – The Bank of America Chicago Marathon today announced that the
world‰Ûªs fastest 8K road runner and back-to-back Bank of America Shamrock
Shuffle champion, Stephen Sambu (Tucson, Ariz.), will make his highly
anticipated marathon debut in Chicago on October 9.

Sambu follows in the footsteps of some of racing’s biggest legends who
made their running debuts in Chicago. Fearless and aggressive from the
start, runner Steve Jones burst onto the marathon scene in 1984 to set a
world record in his debut with a time of 2:08:05. Former world
record-holder Khalid Khannouchi toed the line for the first time in
1997, running 2:07:10 to set a course, debut and North American record.
Ondoro Orso followed in 1998 to crack Khannouchi‰Ûªs time with a finish of
2:06:54 to set a new course, debut, North American and Kenyan national
record. In 2005, Evans Rutto elevated the running game with a new debut
record of 2:05:50, and Ethiopian Ejegayehu Dibaba ran the second-fastest
debut for women in 2011 at 2:22:09.

“The Bank of America Chicago Marathon has a long tradition of featuring
the world‰Ûªs best athletes making their marathon debuts right here,” said
Bank of America Chicago Marathon Executive Race Director Carey
Pinkowski. “To have Stephen Sambu, a person with deep integrity on top
of being a talented athlete, add his name to that legacy is truly
exciting. He‰Ûªs one of the most highly rated athletes on the road today
who isn‰Ûªt afraid to go to the well and put in the work. He loves the
energy of racing in our city.”

Sambu, a native of Kenya living and training in Arizona, stands out as
one of the best competitors on the road racing circuit today. He entered
the record books in 2014 when he posted a time of 22:01 in the 8K en
route to a 10K victory at the Boston Athletic Association 10K. He made
his debut in the Windy City at the 2015 Bank of America Shamrock
Shuffle, running uncontested with the fastest time in more than a
decade and the 12th-fastest time in the event‰Ûªs history. He returned in
2016 on the heels of capturing a victory at the New York City Half
Marathon to run the fourth-fastest time in that event‰Ûªs history with a
time of 22:46, beating his nearest challenger by 66 seconds.

“I’m excited to make my first marathon appearance in Chicago because of
the strong history of runners making their debut here,” says Sambu. “I’m
training very hard and can’t wait to race in front of the fans. I love
the flat streets of the city, and I look forward to coming back.”

Prior to his professional running career, Sambu spent some time in
Illinois at Rend Lake Junior College, where he captured 10 individual
national championships, including two National Junior College Athletic
Association (NJCAA) national cross country titles. He finished his
career at the University of Arizona, where he emerged as a seven-time
National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) All-American. He was the
2011 PAC 10 10,000m champion and the 2012 PAC 12 10,000m champion.
Sambu holds personal records of 13:13 in the 5,000m, 26:54 in the
10,000m, and 1:00:41 in the half marathon. His 10K best on the road,
27:25, is the 18th fastest time in history.

About the Bank of America Chicago Marathon
In its 39th year, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon welcomes
thousands of runners from more than 100 countries and all 50 states,
including a world-class elite field, top regional and Masters runners,
race veterans, debut marathoners and charity runners. The race’s iconic
course takes runners through 29 vibrant neighborhoods on an
architectural and cultural tour of Chicago. In 2015, an estimated 1.7
million spectators lined the streets cheering on 37,459 runners from the
start line to the final stretch down Columbus Drive. As a result of the
race’s national and international draw, the Chicago Marathon assists in
raising millions of dollars for a variety of charitable causes while
generating $254 million in annual economic impact to its host city. The
2016 Bank of America Chicago Marathon, a member of the Abbott World
Marathon Majors, will start and finish in Grant Park beginning at 7:30
a.m. on Sunday, October 9. In advance of the race, a two-day Abbott
Health & Fitness Expo will be held at McCormick Place Convention
Center on Friday, October 7, and Saturday, October 8. For more
information about the event and how to get involved, go to

Visit the Bank of America newsroom for more Bank of America news, and click here to register for news email alerts.

Check Also

Scottish Three-peat Sweep of Fifth Avenue Mile


Leave a Reply

NE Runner