A group of international runners heads the men’s field and a U.S. runner is among the women’s favorites for the California International Marathon on Dec. 7.
Julius Koskei, Eliud Ngetich and Jacob Chemtai of Kenya, Tesfaye Alemayehu of Ethiopia and Jordan Chipangama of Zambia are expected to be the top challengers to win the men’s race and the $10,000 first prize on the 26.2-mile course from near Folsom Dam to the state Capitol.
Koskei, runner-up in the 2013 CIM, has a personal best of 2 hours, 10 minutes, 14 seconds, the fastest time in the men’s field. Alemayehu, who lives in Antioch, has run 2:11:18 and has two top-three CIM finishes. Ngetich ran 2:11:59 in 2013 and Chemtai had a 2:12:39 time earlier this year. Chipangama has run a 2:12:22 this year.
Renee Baillee of Bend, Ore., finished eighth in the 2012 Chicago Marathon in 2:27.17 in her marathon debut. Other top contenders in the women’s race, which also pays $10,000 to the winner, include Tanith Maxwell of South Africa (2:32:33), Jennifer Houck of Raleigh, N.C. (2:33:00) and Volha Mazuronak of Belarus (2:33:33).
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Bee Sports staff