Elite American Runners Set for U.S. Championships

Field includes U.S. Olympian, American Record holder and past CIM winner - The California International Marathon will celebrate 35 years on December 3 with its largest field of runners, a prestigious national designation and several community and participant-focused enhancements.
In addition to the excitement around the 35th running of the race and the rising interest in participation, the profile of the race on the national stage received a large boost with the CIM’s selection to host the U.S. Marathon Championships in 2017 and 2018.
 
USA Track & Field, the sport’s national governing body, selected Sacramento to host the U.S. Marathon Championships at the California International Marathon for men and women in 2017 and 2018.
 
As a result, top American long distance runners have entered the elite field for the national championships, which will offer a $140,000 prize purse, the largest in event history, plus performance bonuses.?
 
U.S. Olympian Janet Bawcom and 2012 CIM winner Daniel Tapia headline the deep American fields.

Bawcom of Flagstaff, Ariz., represented the United States at the 2012 Olympic Games placing 12th in the 10,000 meters with a personal best time of 31:12.68. She enters CIM with a marathon best of 2:29:45 from the 2012 Houston Marathon. No stranger to success on the roads, Bawcom won the 2011 U.S. Running Circuit after claiming the 20k, 10-Mile and 10k U.S. Road Championships and set an American Record in the 25k at the 2012 U.S. Championships.

Tapia of Mammoth Lakes, Calif., won the 2012 CIM in 2:16.29 in a breakout performance. He lowered his personal best to 2:14:30 four months later at the 2013 Boston Marathon. Tapia returned to CIM last year and finished third in 2:12:28, a more than 2-minute personal best for the Castroville, Calif. native and former SRA Elite athlete.

“I picture myself crossing that CIM finish line achieving all of my goals and sharing that moment with friends and family,” said Tapia. “I have great memories at CIM, and hope to ice the Sacramento cake with another great performance here.”

Bawcom is taking a more Zen-like approach.

“I’m not really worried about winning or not – I just want to go out and have a day that I think reflects me getting the most out of my fitness on race day,” said Bawcom. “If that wins, great; if not, no worries.”
 
The Sacramento Running Association, organizers of the California International Marathon, has increased the prize purse by nearly $100,000 as compared to 2016 and added several opportunities for elite runners to earn more money through performance bonuses.
 
CIM has historically hosted a performance-focused and deep, international championship field but the 2017 edition will be limited to American distance runners as a result of the U.S. Marathon Championships designation.
 
“The California International Marathon is regarded as one of the top performance running events in the country, so it provides the perfect platform for the U.S. Marathon Championship competition,” said Sacramento Running Association executive director Scott Abbott.
 
“Sacramento has one of the best running communities in the United States, and we are a community, as a whole, that supports all different kids of sporting events exceptionally well, so we expect that there will be a lot of excitement around this event and that it will be a source of pride for our community.”
 
Both Bawcom and Tapia can expect to have company in the lead pack from the strongest American field in race history.

“We have deep fields on both the men's and women's side,” said CIM elite coordinator Danielle Domenichelli. “I expect to see a great group of athletes competing for the coveted top 10 positions, which earns prize money and points on the USATF Running Circuit.”

“The 2017 championship field will feature a number of veteran marathoners with long lists of accomplishments, as well as a competitive group of first time marathoners.”

On the women’s side, Clara Santucci (Lawrence, Penn.) and Lauren Totten (Santa Barbara, Calif.) look to be strong contenders for the title and the $20,000 first prize while first-timer Katie Matthews hopes to make her marathon debut at CIM a memorable one.

Santucci enters CIM with a 2:29:54 personal best from the 2011 Boston Marathon. She won the 2014 and 2015 Pittsburgh Marathons, placed sixth at the 2014 Chicago Marathon and competed at the 2014 IAAF World Half Marathon Championships, placing 34th with a 1:12:22 performance.

Totten (formerly Jimison), a native of El Dorado Hills, placed third and set a personal best of 2:33:22 at last year’s CIM. She debuted with a fourth place finish at the 2014 Grandma’s Marathon (2:35:17) and then lowered that mark to 2:34:38 at the 2014 Chicago Marathon before her breakout performance at CIM.

“It would be an honor to be the U.S. champion and in my hometown with the support of family, friends, and SRA, who has been a wonderful and faithful sponsor,” said Totten. “It is so exciting to be racing the U.S. Championships at CIM.”

“Sacramento is a city that loves and embraces running and I can't think of a better place to run a marathon.”

“I might be biased, but I think Sacramento is a pretty special place.”

Matthews of Belmont, Mass., placed fourth at the 2016 U.S. 15k Championships and ninth at the 2016 Houston Half Marathon and is hopeful her success at the half marathon distance will translate to success over 26.2 miles in her marathon debut.

“CIM is considered by many to be an excellent marathon for athletes to make their debut due to the great weather, competition, and excellent course,” said Domenichelli.

In the men’s race, Timothy Ritchie (New Haven, Conn.), Nick Arciniaga (Salt Lake City, Utah) and Craig Leon (Eugene, Ore.) all appear capable of winning the title and the $20,000 first prize on the 26.2-mile course from near Folsom Dam to the state Capitol.

Ritchie and Jon Grey (Boston, Mass.) enter CIM sitting in the top 10 of the 2017 USATF Running Circuit standings and could improve their position with a strong marathon performance at CIM. Newcomer Parker Stinson (Boulder, Colo.) looks to also be in the mix with the lead pack in his marathon debut.

Ritchie enters CIM with a 2:14:50 personal best from the 2013 Twin Cities Marathon. He won the 2015 Philadelphia Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon with a 1:01:23 and is a 3:58-miler. He is currently in fifth place in the 2017 USATF Running Circuit with just the marathon to be run.

“It is a career goal of mine to win a national championship and to be able to do so in the marathon would be a real honor,” said Ritchie.

Arciniaga, who enters the race with the fastest marathon time in the field having run a 2:11:30 at the 2011 Houston Marathon, clocked top ten performances at both the Olympic Trials and the Boston Marathon, placing eighth at the 2012 Olympic Trials, 10th at the 2016 Olympic Trials and seventh at the 2014 Boston Marathon.

“I generally imagine myself as the underdog, however, going into this race I have the best marathon resume out of my competitors,” said Arciniaga.

“I will go into this race knowing I have a target on my back and will have to rely on my experience, tactics and ability to run my smartest race.”

Leon brings a marathon-best 2:13:52 and a resume of strong performances at U.S. major marathons to CIM. He placed 13th at the 2013 Chicago Marathon (2:13:52), 12th at the 2014 Boston Marathon (2:14:28) and eighth at the 2015 New York City Marathon (2:15:16).

“A win in Sacramento would mean becoming a U.S. champion,” said Leon. “Being able to call yourself a U.S. champion would be incredibly special.”

Grey sits in sixth place in the 2017 USATF Running Circuit standings after five top 10 performances in circuit events. He enters CIM with one marathon under his belt, a 2:24:09 performance at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials, but boasts a strong 1:02:47 time in the half marathon and should push the veterans in the lead pack at CIM.

Stinson is looking to ride his collegiate and junior success into his marathon debut. The nine-time University of Oregon All-American and three-time U.S. Junior and Pan American Junior 10,000 meter champion brings a strong 1:03:17 half marathon time to his first 26.2-mile test.

“Keep an eye out for our young athletes including Katie Matthews and Parker Stinson, who will be looking to produce breakthrough performances on December 3,” added Domenichelli.

The Sacramento Running Association worked closely with the Sacramento Sports Commission and Sacramento Convention and Visitors Bureau on the bid to host the marathon championships as part of a slate of bids to bring numerous championship running events to the Sacramento area over the next two to three years.
 
“We are thrilled to partner with the California International Marathon and USA Track & Field to bring the U.S. Marathon Championships to Sacramento,” said Mike Sophia, director of the Sacramento Sports Commission. 
 
“We have a tremendous running community and one of the truly great marathons in the country, so this is one of those events that is a perfect fit for our city and the sport.”
 
The Sacramento Running Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to finding new ways to encourage people of all ages and abilities to run. The SRA is committed to developing new, quality running events that appeal to a broad variety of runners.
 
A look at the elite field for the California International Marathon:
 
MEN
Nick Arciniaga, 2:11:30
Fernando Cabada, 2:11:36
Daniel Tapia, 2:12:28
Sergio Reyes, 2:13:34
Patrick Rizzo, 2:13:42
Craig Leon, 2:13:52
Tim Young, 2:14:40
Timothy Ritchie, 2:14:50
Malcolm Richards, 2:15:10
Craig Curley, 2:15:16
Tyler McCandless, 2:15:26
Christopher Zablocki, 2:15:39
Jameson Mora, 2:15:44
Nathan Martin, 2:15:47
Tyler Andrews, 2:15:52
Eric Loeffler, 2:16:48
Tyler Jermann, 2:1652
Sean Brown, 2:17:02
Brian Harvey, 2:17:05
Eric Ashe, 2:17:06
Chris Chavez, 2:17:07
Jesse Armijo, 2:17:19
Anthony Costales, 2:17:48
Eric Finan, 2:17:51
Robert Cheseret, 2:18
Colin Leak, 2:18:16
Matthew Fecht, 2:18:19
Mason Frank, 2:18:34
Kevin Pool, 2:18:59
Sam Kosgei, 2:19
Patrick Geoghegan, 2:19:38
Kenneth Foster, 2:19:49
Matt Hensley, 2:19:51
Kyle Stanton, 2:20:04
Nicholas Edinger, 2:20:32
Kevin Castille, 2:20:58
David Sinclair, 2:20:58
Eric Noel, 2:21:05
Gregory Leak, 2:21:09
Will Nation, 2:21:29
Ramiro Guillen, 2:21:29
Jerry Faulkner, 2:21:53
Jorge Maravilla, 2:21:57
Kiya Dandena, 2:22:14
Madison Roeder, 2:22:14
Christian Thompson, 2:22:48
Makorobondo Salukombo, 2:22:49
Austin Richmond, 2:23
Tyler Underwood, 2:23:29
Dylan Belles, 2:23:48
Jon Grey, 2:24:09
Stewart Harwell, 2:24:51
Eduardo Garcia, 2:25:17
Matt Rand, 2:26:30
Rob Molke, 2:26:39
Juan Paredes, 2:27:21
Isidore Herrera, 2:27:29
Johnny Crain, 2:27:37
Mark Leininger, 2:28:17
Parker Stinson, Debut
George-Byron Alex, Debut
Nicolas Montanez, Debut
Cole Watson, Debut
Ryan Miller, Debut
Ty McCormack, Debut
Bo Waggoner, Debut
Ben Sathre, Debut
Samuel Mueller, Debut
Chris Sloane, Debut
Matt McDonald, Debut
Andrew McLain, Debut
Enoch Nadler, Debut
Brandon Johnson, Debut
Travis Fuller, Debut
Craig Hunt, Debut
Ian Butler, Debut
Seth Totten, Debut

WOMEN?
Renee Metivier, 2:27:17
Janet Bawcom, 2:29:45
Clara Santucci, 2:29:54
Lauren Totten, 2:33:22
Heather Lieberg, 2:34:09
Kelsey Bruce, 2:36:09
Samantha Bluske, 2:36:26
Roberta Groner, 2:36:33
Semehar Tesfaye, 2:37:27
Carrie Dimoff, 2:37:30
Lauren Philbrook, 2:38:00
Madeline Duhon, 2:38:44
Kate Landau, 2:38:45
Andie Cozzarelli, 2:38:47
Meghan Peyton, 2:38:58
Gina Slaby, 2:39
Christina Murphy, 2:39:15
Kaitlin Goodman, 2:39:29
Laura Paulsen, 2:39:54
Jenelle Deatherage, 2:39:59
Julia Roman-Duval, 2:40:55
Ashley Brasovan, 2:41
Dawn Grunnagle, 2:41:04
Autumn Ray, 2:41:09
Molly Friel, 2:41:30
Lindsay Tollefson, 2:41:31
Caitlin Smith, 2:41:37
Phebe Ko, 2:41:42
Sarah Pease, 2:41:45
Sallie Post, 2:41:49
Raquel Stucky, 2:41:08
Hilary Corno, 2:41:16
Heather Tanner, 2:42:19
Christine Shaw, 2:42:21
Lyndy Davis, 2:42:34
Kate DeProsperis, 2:42:49
Taylor Bickford, 2:42:52
Keely Maguire, 2:43:06
Stephanie Andre, 2:43:07
Katie Kellner, 2:43:41
Tracy Guerrette, 2:43:47
Bonnie Keating, 2:44:05
Bridget Lyons, 2:44:13
Jen Bergman, 2:44:21
Kaitlin Sheedy, 2:44:28
Shawna McClain, 2:44:39
Theresa Hailey, 2:45:01
McKale Montgomery, 2:45:05
Kelly Boler, 2:45:14
Gina Rouse, 2:45:15
Courtney Olsen, 2:45:26
Tara Richardson, 2:45:39
Fionna Fallon, 2:45:49
Liz Camy, 2:46
Leilani Rios, 2:46:17
Bridie McCarey, 2:47:28
Mallory Anderson, 2:47:48
Jennifer Zwick, 2:48:19
Krystalanne Curwood, 2:49:36
Brooke Slayman, 2:51:17
Kerry Allen, 2:51:55
Sabrina Lopez, 2:52:02
Regina Lopez, 2:52:02
Nicole Dimercurio, 2:52:17
AnnMarie Kirkpatrick, 2:56
Katie Matthews, Debut
Gabi Anzalone, Debut
Lauren Martin-Masterson, Debut
Amy Schnittger, Debut
Rachel Young, Debut