The running stars are preparing to assault records at the Volkswagen Prague Marathon on Sunday
The lineup of elite athletes for the Volkswagen Prague Marathon on Sunday (May 8) from the Old Town Square in Prague shows that course records are possible.
The favourites in the men’s race are Kenyan Emmanuel Saina and Ethiopian Ayele Abshero whereas the female contenders include Kenyan Nancy Meto and Ethiopian Azmera Hagos.
The host nation interest, meanwhile, comes through Jiří Homoláč and Marcela Joglová.
However, it will not be just a victory for individuals. The new concept of the Battle of the Teams will make tension in the race until the last moment.
“We are glad that we managed to bring pro-athletes to Prague again, the spectators can look forward to great performances,” said Carlo Capalbo, president of the RunCzech organising committee.
Saina won the 2018 Buenos Aires Marathon and has a best of 2:05:02, while Abshero is a former winner in Dubai in 2:04:23. And such a time would be enough for both of them to achieve the best performance so far in Prague, which is 2:05:39.
We can also expect an attack on the women’s course erecord of 2:19:46. Meto, who dominated the race in Valencia last year with 2:19:31, has the biggest chance to attack the record. Her biggest rival should be Hagos – Ethiopian athlete won second place at the Paris Marathon in 2019 and was finishing third in the same season in Amsterdam, where she ran a personal best of 2:20:48.
Prize money of $12,500 is prepared for the winners of individual categories. For breaking a world record is the prize of $100,000. But another interesting bonus for professionals can also be the triumph in Battle of The Teams.
The Volkswagen Prague Marathon will offer a unique team concept of the race, where everyone can help with the result. Each of the six teams (Volkswagen, Mattoni, adidas Runners, Birell, ČEZ Group and Generali Česká pojišťovna) will have four pro-athletes and the rest will be joined by thousands of enthusiasts whose time is important from now on. The winning team will receive a $30,000 prize, which will be divided equally among all professional athletes.
Division of pro-athletes into Battle of the Teams
Team Volkswagen: Ayele Abshero, Risper Chebet, Vít Pavlišta, Lucy Cheruiyot (backup runners: Edwin Kosgei, Workneh Serbessa)
Team Mattoni: Emmanuel Saina, Sintayehu Hailemichael, Nicolaï Saké, Tigist Gebeyahu (backup runners: Sofiya Chegen, Hiribo Share)
Team adidas Runners: Malene Meyer, Jan Pernica, Julien Lebreton, Philipp Baar, (backup runners: Mohamed Oueslati, Adrien Le Cornec)
Team Birell: Nobert Kigen, Nancy Meto, Benjamin Fletcher, Marcela Joglová, (backup runners: Birho Gidey, Bontu Gada)
Team ČEZ Group: Yuma Hattori, Azmera Hagos, Jiří Homoláč, (backup runners: Bekelech Borecha, Dulce Félix, Jose Gonzalez)
Team Generali Česká pojišťovna: Kelkile Woldaregay, Purity Changwony, Edward Goddard, Yitayal Zerihun (backup runners: Waganesh Amare, Geoffrey Yegon)