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Eric Jenkins of Portland, Oregon win men’s and Edna Kiplagat wins women’s divisions of 83rd running of the Manchester Road Race

Eric Jenkins of Portland, Oregon and Edna Kiplagat of Boulder, Colorado have won the men’s and women’s division of the 83rd running of the Manchester Road Race.

Jenkins covered the 4.748-mile (7.641-kilometer) distance in 21:18 (unofficial), almost besting the old mark of 21:16 set last year by Edward Cheserek.

Edward Cheserek, last year’s men’s division winner, of Johnson City, Tennessee, was second.

In the women’s race, Edna Kiplagat finished with an unofficial clocking of 24:29.

Kiplagat is a policewoman in Iten, Kenya. She started the Edna Kiplagat Foundation to raise awareness of breast cancer. Is is the 2011 and 2013 IAAF World Champion, and has established herself as an elite marathon runner in 2010 with wins at the Los Angeles and New York City marathons.

Jenkins competed for Northeastern University and transferred to the University of Oregon in 2013 where he won the men’s 3K and 5K at the 2015 NCAA DI Indoor Track and Field Championships.

During his time at the school, a famous rivalry formed between him and his teammate Edward Cheserek who would always finish either closely behind or ahead of Jenkins in several races (including today!).

(11/28/2019) Views: 615 ⚡AMP
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Manchester Road Race

Manchester Road Race

The Manchester Road race is one of New England’s oldest and most popular road races. The 80th Manchester Road Race will be held on Thanksgiving Day. It starts and finishes on Main Street, in front of St. James Church. The Connecticut Sports Writers’ Alliance recently honored the Manchester Road Race. The CSWA, which is comprised of sports journalists and broadcasters...

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Wilhelm "Willi" Frederich, 85, will be running his 50th Manchester Road Race on Thanksgiving Day

An 85-year-old retired master craftsman and cancer survivor will achieve what organizers are calling a "remarkable" achievement when he lines up to start the 2019 Manchester Road Race on Thanksgiving morning. It will be Wilhelm "Willi" Frederich's 50th appearance in the famed race.

Frederich, a retired contractor and master craftsman from Ellington, ran in his first MRR in 1968. He has finished the 4.748-mile run every year since then with the exception of 1999 and 2000. He missed those races due to illness in the family, race officials said.

Frederick's own illness did not stop him last Thanksgiving,. Frederich, who was then battling bone cancer that is now in remission, braved the 14-degree weather with a zero wind chill and covered the road race course in a wheel chair equipped with a hand crank.

He plans to walk and jog the course next Thursday, accompanied by 10 family members and friends. Frederich will be easy to spot on the race course. He will be wearing one of the special red, white and blue numbers bibs that the road race committee issues to its longtime entrants. Frederich and his running mates will also don special yellow jerseys emblazoned with "Team Willi" on the front.

This is a fantastic accomplishment," said Dr. Tris Carta of the Manchester Road Race Committee. "We are very proud of Willi Frederich, and all of our perennial performers."

(11/23/2019) Views: 816 ⚡AMP
by Chris Dehnel
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Manchester Road Race

Manchester Road Race

The Manchester Road race is one of New England’s oldest and most popular road races. The 80th Manchester Road Race will be held on Thanksgiving Day. It starts and finishes on Main Street, in front of St. James Church. The Connecticut Sports Writers’ Alliance recently honored the Manchester Road Race. The CSWA, which is comprised of sports journalists and broadcasters...

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Two-time Olympic steeplechaser Donn Cabral is in good shape and feeling confident about the Manchester Road Race

His goal, for a while now, has been to win the race he grew up running, the fabled Manchester Road Race, on Thanksgiving Day.

Cabral, 29, of Hartford finished third over the 4.748-mile course in 2012 in 21:33. He was fourth in 2014 (21:51) and second in 2015 in 21:36.

“If I were to win Manchester,” Cabral said at Thursday’s annual press lunch at the Manchester Country Club, “that would trump winning the Penn Relays, the national title – it would be on the same level as making the Olympic team.

“I’m feeling as confident now for my fitness this year as any year I’ve ever run this.”

The 83rd annual race will take place Nov. 28 at 10 a.m. on Main Street in Manchester. Over 12,000 runners and walkers are expected.

Cabral, who grew up in Glastonbury, said he had a “horrible track season.” Last year, he finished 20th at Manchester in 22:36. But his recent workouts are mirroring his successful past runs.

“I just did a workout which was a 5-mile run, where four miles are at a comfortably hard pace and the last mile’s hard,” he said. “I did that same workout eight days before Thanksgiving in 2012. I ended up running 21:33. I just did the same workout this past weekend, and given conditions and pacing, it was at least equivalent to what I did in 2012. I’m confident going forward. I’m ready to go.”

Cabral has been going to law school and business school but he’s taking the spring semester off to focus on making it to the Tokyo Olympics.

“I’ve had a couple years where I’ve been struggling to kind of get my legs under me and find out what’s been going on,” he said. “I had little bright spots here and there but they’re becoming fewer and further between. To an outside observer, maybe it is age. But there are plenty of 30-year-old runners who are at the top of their career, so I ignore that.

“I’ve spoken with some doctors and I think it’s being able to keep some stressors in my life down and being able to keep the amount of calories up I need to meet those needs.”

Defending champion Edward Cheserek is returning. Cheserek ran a course record 21:16 in bitter cold conditions last year.

“Well, Edward Cheserek is one of the best runners in American history,” Cabral said. “If he wants to go out and run what that time is equivalent to on a good day, I don’t think anyone’s going to be stopping him - 21:16 on the coldest day in Manchester Road Race history is otherworldly. That said, he’s human and he gets beat and he’s not always on his game. When he’s on his game, it would take something I haven’t seen in myself yet to beat him. I think I’m ready to run phenomenally and if he’s at all off, or compromised, I’m ready to take him down.

(11/22/2019) Views: 737 ⚡AMP
by Lori Riley
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Manchester Road Race

Manchester Road Race

The Manchester Road race is one of New England’s oldest and most popular road races. The 80th Manchester Road Race will be held on Thanksgiving Day. It starts and finishes on Main Street, in front of St. James Church. The Connecticut Sports Writers’ Alliance recently honored the Manchester Road Race. The CSWA, which is comprised of sports journalists and broadcasters...

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Manchester Road Race director Jim Balcome Gets Major National Award

The director of the Manchester Road Race has been recognized nationally for his efforts to coordinate the Thanksgiving Day event.

Jim Balcome, the director and backbone of the Manchester Road Race for about four decades, has been recognized nationally for his efforts to coordinate the annual Thanksgiving Day run.

Balcome is known for his meticulous — and personal — approach to the annual Thanksgiving Day event and, last weekend, he was awarded the "Marathon Foto/Road Race Management RaceDirector of the Year Award," which is presented by MYLAPS Sports Timing.

The honor has been described by Boston Marathon champion Bill Rodgers as "the goldmedal of race directing," has been presented annually since 1987 to the nation's best race director. It is considered to be one of the most prestigious awards in the sport of road racing.

A committee comprised of race directors, athletes, media representatives, corporate executivesand club officials selected Balcome from a group of nominees who were judged on several factors,including overall ability, the reputation of the race, creativity, and organizational ability.

Balcome, 76, coined the race day phrase, "This is Thanksgiving in Manchester," and is known for making Manchester "a runners race" from the elite athletes kicking toward the tape down Main Street to the guy in the back of the 11,000-strong field kicking back in a bunny suit.

Balcome has served as the MRR's race director for 40 years. He's a past president of the Silk City Striders Running Club and competed in the road race for several years before being asked to lead its operations.

He's an Air Force veteran and retired Rockville High School teacher, guidance counselor and track coach who spends between 500 and 600 hours each year performing the "countless tasks" that are necessary to stage a major road race like the MRR, other race officials said.

(11/14/2019) Views: 454 ⚡AMP
by Chris Dehnel
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Manchester Road Race

Manchester Road Race

The Manchester Road race is one of New England’s oldest and most popular road races. The 80th Manchester Road Race will be held on Thanksgiving Day. It starts and finishes on Main Street, in front of St. James Church. The Connecticut Sports Writers’ Alliance recently honored the Manchester Road Race. The CSWA, which is comprised of sports journalists and broadcasters...

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Defending champion and course record holder Edward Cheserek will be back in 2019 to defend his title at the 83rd Manchester Road Race

Defending champion and course record holder Edward Cheserek has entered the 83rd Manchester Road Race, race officials announced Thursday.

Cheserek hails from of Flagstaff, AZ, by way of Kenya.

Cheserek, 25, won the annual Thanksgiving Day run last year in 14-degree weather with zero wind chills and set a new record for the 4.748-mile course with a time of 21:16. He sliced three seconds off the old mark of 21:19 that had stood since 1995.

"Edward Cheserek ran a super race under very difficult conditions last year," said Dr. Tris Carta, president of the Manchester Road Race Committee. "We are very pleased that he will be back this Thanksgiving to defend his championship."

Cheserek captured 17 NCAA running championships when he competed for the University of Oregon. He won the Carlsbad 5,000 Road Race in California this past April with a time of 13:29. Cheserek recorded a personal best time of 13:04.44 for 5,000 meters this summer during an outdoor meet in Belgium, and also placed third at the seven-mile Falmouth Road Race in 32:30.

The 83rd Manchester Road Race will be run at 10 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 28, 2019).

The 4.748-mile race is run on a loop course through Manchester's central streets and starts and finishes on Main Street, in front of St. James Church.

(11/13/2019) Views: 564 ⚡AMP
by Chris Dehnel
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Manchester Road Race

Manchester Road Race

The Manchester Road race is one of New England’s oldest and most popular road races. The 80th Manchester Road Race will be held on Thanksgiving Day. It starts and finishes on Main Street, in front of St. James Church. The Connecticut Sports Writers’ Alliance recently honored the Manchester Road Race. The CSWA, which is comprised of sports journalists and broadcasters...

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Edna Kiplagat, one of the world's top marathon runners plans to compete in the 2019 Manchester Road Race

One of the world's greatest marathon runners will compete at the 83rd Manchester Road Race on Thanksgiving Day. Race officials announced Monday that Edna Kiplagat, who won the 26.2-mile event at the World Championships in 2011 and 2013, will return to Manchester after a two-year absence.

She finished fourth at the 2016 MRR with a time of 24:34.

Kiplagat, who turns 40 on Nov., 15, grew up in Kenya and recently relocated to the Boulder, Colorado area. She won the 2017 Boston Marathon, the 2014 London Marathon, and the New York City and Los Angeles Marathons, both in 2010. Kiplagat recorded her best time for the event in 2012 when she placed second behind Mary Keitany at the London Marathon in 2:19:50.

The mother of five children and a former police physical fitness instructor in Kenya, Kipligat was the runner-up at the Boston Marathon last April, and finished fourth in the marathon at the 2019 World Championships, which were held last month in Doha, Qatar.

Kiplagat will join Olympic silver medalist Sally Kipyego in a highly competitive womens elite field at the annual 4.78-mile Thanksgiving Day run through Manchester's central streets.

The 83rd Manchester Road Race is scheduled will take place on Nov. 28 at 10 a.m.

(11/12/2019) Views: 709 ⚡AMP
by Chris Dehnel
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Manchester Road Race

Manchester Road Race

The Manchester Road race is one of New England’s oldest and most popular road races. The 80th Manchester Road Race will be held on Thanksgiving Day. It starts and finishes on Main Street, in front of St. James Church. The Connecticut Sports Writers’ Alliance recently honored the Manchester Road Race. The CSWA, which is comprised of sports journalists and broadcasters...

more...
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NCAA champ Cheserek breaks course record on a frigid day at the Manchester Road Race, and Celliphine Chespol of Kenya wins for the women runners

In frigid conditions, Clutching hand warmers to fend off the frigid cold, Edward Cheserek broke the course record, winning the 82nd Manchester Road Race in 21:16 Thursday morning. Cheserek, a 17-time NCAA champion from Flagstaff, Ariz., broke the record for the 4.748-mile race set by Aaron Braun (21:19) in 2012. It was his first time running Manchester. “I looked at the time, it was 21:17 or 16 and I thought that’s really OK,” said Cheserek, 24, who didn’t know he broke the record until somebody told him. “That’s a very good time.” Cheserek broke away from the pack at the top of the Highland Street hill and ran alone down Main Street toward the finish. Last year’s champion Paul Chelimo was second and Andy Butchart, who defied the elements by wearing a singlet and shorts, was third. Celliphine Chespol of Kenya was the women’s winner, outkicking last year’s winner Buze Diriba and 2016 winner Emily Sisson at the finish. It was the first road race for Chespol, 19, who is a steeplechaser. She ran the third fastest time (8:58.78 in the 3,000 meter steepchase in May 2017 at the Prefontaine Classic. “I’m so happy because this is my first time to run a road race,” Chespol said. It was about 16 degrees at the start but the wind chill lowered the temperatures to single digits. About 12,000 people ran and walked Thursday. (11/22/2018) Views: 838 ⚡AMP
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Paul Chelimo will return to defend his title at Manchester Road Race on Thanksgiving Day

Paul Chelimo, the Olympic silver medalist who won the Manchester Road Race last year, and Buze Diriba of Ethiopia, who set the women’s course record last year, will return for the annual Thanksgiving Day 4.748-mile race on Nov. 22. Chelimo, 27, won the race last year in 21:32, edging out runner-up Kirubel Erassa, who finished in 21:34. Erassa, who moved from Ethiopia to Georgia when he was 11, is a naturalized American citizen and was an All-America runner at Oklahoma State. He is also returning to run at Manchester. Chelimo, who competes for the U.S. Army’s World Class Athletes Program, won the silver medal in the 5,000 meters at the Rio Olympics. Last summer, in a meet in Brussels, he ran the fourth-fastest time ever by an American in the 5,000 meters, 12:57.55. Last year, Diriba, who lives and trains in Albuquerque, won the women’s title in 21:57, outkicking Olympian Molly Huddle, who also finished under the course record (23:59, set by the late Emelie Mondor in 2003). Nick Willis, a two-time Olympic medalist in the 1,500 meters from New Zealand who won Manchester in 2005, is also returning, as is Olympic steeplechaser Donn Cabral, who lives in Hartford. (11/14/2018) Views: 870 ⚡AMP
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The 82nd Manchester Road Race Committee will honor veterans and current members of the U.S. Armed Forces at this year's race on Thanksgiving Day

The Manchester Road Race Committee will honor veterans and current members of the U.S. Armed Forces at this year's race. All active duty and reserve military personnel and veterans who are entered in this year's road race are being invited to a pre-race reception on Thanksgiving morning. The reception is slated for 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on Main Street, near the corner of East Center Street, in Manchester. A "Veteran's Row," lined with the military flags of all five service branches and the POW/MIA flag, will be located near the race course in front of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. A color guard from the Veterans of Foreign War Anderson-Shea Post 2046 in Manchester will salute all veterans as they run down the Main Street home stretch. The military flags and a three-quarter-ton restored Army truck that will also be on on display are being be supplied by American Legion Post 133 of South Windsor. The Manchester Road Race Committee is being assisted in its tribute to veterans by Bob Venti and other members of the Manchester Veterans' Council. The Manchester Road Race Committee also announced that it will donate all of the proceeds from its "Honors Club Program" this year to the Veterans Support Foundation's Dinda House, a transitional living facility for veterans located in Manchester. Dinda House is named in honor of Army Specialist Fourth Class Michael J. Dinda of Kensington, CT, who was killed in action in South Vietnam on Dec. 29, 1969. "We are extremely pleased to honor all of our veterans at this year's race," said Dr. Tris Carta, president of the Manchester Road Race Committee. "It is our small way of saying thanks for their service and sacrifices." (11/13/2018) Views: 963 ⚡AMP
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Running legend Amby Burfoot is going to run his 56th consecutive Manchester Road Race

Running legend and nine-time champion Amby Burfoot is expected to run in the Manchester Road Race for a record 56th consecutive time on Thanksgiving Day, race officials announced this week. Burfoot, the 1968 Boston Marathon champion, won the 4.748-mile road race in Manchester nine times between 1968 and 1977. Burfoot competed in Manchester for the first time in 1963 as a 17-year-old high school senior, and he hasn't missed a Thanksgiving morning on Main Street since then. The retired Runner's World magazine editor already holds the MRR record for most consecutive runs at 55. "Amby Burfoot running in our road race is as much of a Thanksgiving Day tradition in Manchester as turkey and pumpkin pie," said Dr. Tris Carta, president of the Manchester Road Race Committee. "We are delighted that he's with us again this year, and we deeply appreciate his long standing devotion to the race." (11/06/2018) Views: 908 ⚡AMP
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Buze Diriba of Ethiopia is set to defend her title at Manchester Road Race

Buze Diriba of Ethiopia will defend the Manchester Road Race title she captured with a record-setting time last Thanksgiving. Race officials this week announced today that Diriba, 24, has entered the 2018 MRR. She edged Molly Huddle at the finish line last year to win in 23:57. Her time beat the course record of 23:59 set by the late Emilie Mondor of Canada in 2003. Joining her in the 2018 field will be former winners Diane Nukuri and Emily Sisson. Nukuri, an Olympic runner from Burundi, captured back-to-back road race championships in 2014 and 2015. Sisson, who was an All-American competitor at Providence College, won the 2016 MRR. The 82nd Manchester Road Race will take place at 10 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 22 of this year). The race starts and finishes on Main Street in Manchester, in front of St. James Church. (11/06/2018) Views: 891 ⚡AMP
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