STWM 2012 starts to take shape as Spring Marathon fever grips the planet!

TORONTO. April 10th. Am pleased to report that we are working hard on several exciting new features for Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon 2012 (to be announced SOON!), as MARATHON Spring Fever is about to take over the planet!

“The 8 days that shook the (marathon) world”??

It’s 8 days of “Marathon Extravaganza,” starting on Sunday 15th ,and to paraphrase Liz Robbins, it promises “a season of marathons like no other”!

My permanent souvenir from Rotterdam Marathon! As Dylan Wykes & i know, it can be a tough race!

 It all starts on Sunday with Rotterdam, Paris and Vienna. Not only will Moses Mosop be taking a run at the current 2:03:38 WR, but we will have major Canadian content in Rotterdam. I have fond memories of the Dutch city, from my trip there with Ed Whitlock in April 2005; plus a nice scar over my left eye to remember it always [no alcohol involved! :) ]. We have modelled our STWM Pro Athlete hotel set-up and programme very closely on Rotterdam. RD Mario Kadiks and Elite Athlete Programme researcher/supporter Eric Brommert, have been kind mentors for STWM. This year, they have also found valuable and scarce Elite Start places for Krista DuChene (Brantford) and Lanni Marchant (London, ON & Chattanooga, TN), who will be making one last herculaean effort to get the Canadian Olympic-qualifying standard of 2:29:55. Rob Watson from London will also be going after the Men’s standard of 2:11:29. The qualifying window closes on April 23rd… [UPDATE: Dylan WYKES also confirmed to be racing Rotterdam on Sunday. Third time lucky? Go Dylan Go! PLUS super Review of Mosop & WR attempt by Men in Rotterdam by PLUS “8 Days for Glory” Overview].

If that’s not enough to get us pumped, there’s Paris, Vienna, Nagano and Milan on the SAME day! Paris has just released their Elite Start Lists and immediately we see some familiar names to chase and cheer for, including none other than Kenneth MUNGARA, 4-time STWM Men’s Champion!  (other STWM alumni in Paris are Tarik Jufar, 2:18:47 at STWM 2008; and Tirfi Tsegaye Beyene, 2nd woman at STWM 2010 in 2:22:44).  

Sharon Cherop, STWM10 Women's Champion, pictured on Nathan Phillips Square stage (Kenneth Mungara to her left in blue jacket), who went onto place 3rd at Boston 2011 and win the bronze medal at IAAF World Championships in Daegu last summer.

 Then it’s Marathon Monday, Patriot’s Day, April 16th, and that means only one thing… BOSTON! I always loved those adidas marketing one-liners: “Boston — everything else is just a qualifier!”; or (showing a photo of masses of midpackers streaming across the Finish Line at Copley Square) “When did you last accomplish so much on a Monday?” After Geoffrey Mutai’s astonishing 2:03:02 time last year, plus another strong tailwind in the forecast this year, ALL eyes will be on Beantown.

STWM will be at the Expo with a booth as usual, in the thick of things. So please drop by and see us (Rhea & Alan). As usual, we’ll also be supporting the “Boston Tea Party Brunch”, and I’ll be in the Media Center trying to provide some extra coverage to my Twitter followers (!/alnbrookes ).

Krista DuChene will be "dreaming big" on Sunday in Rotterdam: 2:29:55...

And do we have STWM/Canadian content in Bawstin or what?

Dave Emilio. STWM Ambassador & Beaches Champion, President of Beaches Running Club, and many STWM friends and alumni will be running the classic. In a wonderful story, Halifax’s Masters women’s star, and Manulife/John Hancock employee, Denise Robson will be making a comeback after a serious illness. Remarkably, we will also see NO LESS THAN FIVE STWM alumni on the Women’s Elite Start List!!

Alevtina Biktimirova  STWM 2007   2:34:54

Caroline Cheptonui Kilel  STWM 2008  2:34:27

Sharon Cherop   STWM 2010 2:22:43 (STWM Champion)

Firehiwot Dado   STWM 2010 2:26:40

Diana Chepkemoi Sigei  STWM 2011  2:28:56

Diane Chepkemoi Sigei's 2:28:56 4th place finish at STWM 2011 earned her a prized place on the Boston Start Line on Monday, along with 4 other STWM alumni.

And, the Men’s Elite Field includes the husband of our Harry’s Spring Run Off Toronto 8K winner from last Saturday, Wesley Korir! (Canada’s answer to Ryan & Sarah Hall? They also have a Foundation that is doing important charity work in Kenya —Paul Gains recent feature story is a must-read!).

We hope to see as many of you as possible!

By Monday, we’ll be REALLY pumped, and just in time to REGISTER to run with “London 2012 Olympic-marathon-bound” REID COOLSAET, right here at home in the Toronto Yonge Street 10K! He’ll be joined on the Start Line by Kip Kanagogo, Harry’s Toronto Champ Tarah McKay-Korir, and Dayna Pidhoresky + Running Room’s John Stanton. The best of Canadian running brought to you by Canada Running Series. ONLINE registration for the April 22nd TYS10K closes Boston-Monday night, April 16th at midnight. Don’t miss it!! 

On the 22nd, thousands of us will be dashing down the iconic Yonge Street course from Eglinton to the EX, just a few hours after some 35,000 others have navigated the streets of the British metropolis, from Greenwich Common to The Palace in the Virgin London Marathon. As always, there will be an astonishlingly deep and talented field there, including our STWM 2011 Women’s Champion, Koren Jelila Yal, plus STWM 2006 runner-up Abderrahime Bouramdane. The run up to London Olys 2012 will be a fitting marathon showcase! If you are running London, please drop by our STWM “stand” at the Expo at Excel and say “hi” to STWM Ambassador Duff McLaren and the team. 

Thanks to her terrific Course Record run of 2:22:42.5 at STWM 2011, Koren Jelila Yal will move from racing past the Princes' Gates, to racing past THE Palace next Sunday in London

“STWM everywhere”? We are very proud of the fact that SO many of you have run with us at STWM, and perhaps STWM and Canada Running Series has acted as a springboard for your running achievements, whether you are at the front, middle or rear of the pack. To each and eveyone we say THANKS — “may the wind always be at your back” — buena suerte — come run with us at TYS10K on April 22nd if you can; wherever you are running or spectating over the next 2 weeks, GREAT RACING! It is going to be an “Extravaganza Like No Other”!  


ps. Not signed up for STWM 2012 yet? Make sure you do so asap at the Early Bird rates.

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