Fast, Deep World Class Field Set for 2012 TD Beach to Beacon 10K Road Race
Thursday, 26 July 2012 10:18

Fast, Deep World Class Field Set for 2012 TD Beach to Beacon 10K Road Race

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Aheza Kiros of Ethiopia returning to defend women’s title while men’s field includes 11 distance athletes with sub 28:00 10Ks on the roads - CAPE ELIZABETH, Maine(July 25, 2012)– The deepest and most talented world-class field ever assembled for the TD Beach to Beacon 10K will toe the line for the special 15th running of the acclaimed road race on Saturday, Aug. 4 in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, race organizers announced Wednesday.

The 30+ men and women distance runners in the 2012 field include some of the top racers on the American circuit as well as a strong contingent of Kenyan and Ethiopian track athletes who narrowly missed the London Olympics, where some would have contended for medals.  

The men’s field features 11 runners who have recorded sub 28:00 10Ks in their careers, with even faster times on the track, putting the race’s 9-year-old course record (27:28) in jeopardy.  

In the women’s race, returning champ Aheza Kiros of Ethiopia is pitted against a stellar field with no less than six runners with sub 31:30 10Ks, including two women with the fastest times ever on the course as well as fellow Ethiopian Aberu Kebede, who might be the most talented distance athlete in the world not competing in London, according to Larry Barthlow, the elite athlete coordinator for the TD Beach to Beacon (  

“I really believe we’ve put together the deepest overall field we’ve ever had, something special for the 15th running,” Barthlow said. “We have runners who have been winning on the American roads this year, but also many new faces fresh off the tracks in Europe who are determined to make some noise here. With the right conditions, both course records could fall.”  

Running icon Joan Benoit Samuelson, winner of the first Olympic marathon for women in 1984 and founder of the TD Beach to Beacon 10K in her native Maine, agreed.  

“With all the excitement surrounding the London Games, this field is going to showcase a number of Olympic-caliber athletes right here in Maine,” said Samuelson, who will join the field this year to commemorate 15 years. “Many of our athletes who just missed the cut on their Kenyan or Ethiopian Olympic teams would have been competing for medals at 5000 or 10,000 meters in London.”

Prize money for the winner of the men’s and women’s races is $10,000. In all, nearly $60,000 in prize money will be awarded to the top finishers and place winners in the various categories for men and women. A $2,500 bonus also is available for any runner who breaks an open course record.

The men’s field is wide open, Barthlow said, with at least eight runners in legitimate contention for the title.  

One of the favorites is Atsedu Tsegay, 20, of Ethiopia, whose 58:47 in Prague this spring remains the fastest half marathon in the world so far in 2012 and is only 24 seconds off the world record. He is an Olympic team alternate for Ethiopia with a personal best (PR) of 27:46 at 10K.  

He will be challenged by another young Ethiopian, Abera Kuma, 21, who finished fifth at the 2011 World Championships at 5000m (13:26) and clocked a 27:18 at 10,000m two weeks ago in Belgium.

Lucas Rotich, 22, of Kenya, is back after finishing second at the 2011 TD Beach to Beacon (27:56) and winning the Falmouth Road Race a week later. He has since recorded a blazing 26:43 on the track at 10,000m.  

Then there’s Kenyan Stanley Biwott, 26, who broke course records at both the Paris Marathon (2:05:11) and Paris Half Marathon (59:04) already in 2012. And keep an eye on Ethiopians Gebretsadik Abraha, 20, who took silver at the 2010 World Junior Championships at 10,000m, and Azmeraw Bekele, 26, winner of the 10,000m at the 2011 Ethiopian Athletic Championships.  

Ed Muge, 29, of Kenya, who won the TD Beach to Beacon 10K in 2008 (setting a PR 27:52) and 2009, is back for his fifth consecutive race. He finished third last year and fifth in 2010.

The field is so deep that one of the most decorated runners on the American road race circuit so far in 2012 – Allan Kiprono, 22, of Kenya – is almost an afterthought among title contenders. Kiprono has already won three major road races – Bellin Run, Lilac Bloomsday Run and Boulder Bolder 10K – and is returning after finishing fifth in 2011 and second in 2010.  

Who else? Lelisa Desisa, 22, is an alternate on the Ethiopian Olympic team after recording a 27:12 earlier this summer. Lewis Nyariki, 23, of Kenya, has run 27:22 at 10,000m. Kiplomo Kumatai, 30, of Kenya, is returning to the TD Beach to Beacon for the first time since his third place finish (a PR of 27:59) in 2008 and has recorded 27:17 on the track. Sammy Chelanga, 27, of Kenya, was an NCAA Cross Country champion at Liberty University and set an NCAA record at 10,000m (27:08.49).  

The leading American entered is Sean Quigley, 27, a top U.S. distance runner and former NCAA champion at LaSalle.  

On the women’s side, Aheza Kiros, 26, is back after becoming the first Ethiopian woman to win the TD Beach to Beacon title (32:09) in 2011. She will likely need a significantly faster time to compete this year – although her 31:06 PR at 10,000m suggests she is more than capable.  

Lineth Chepkuraiknows all about speed along the picturesque TD Beach to Beacon course. The 24-year-old Kenyan shaved 26 seconds off the course record with a blistering 30:59 to win the 2010 race. It was the first sub 31:00 10K ever on Maine soil. She has finished in the top 10 in the World Cross Country championships three times, and also won the Lilac Bloomsday Run and the Bay to Breakers three times each. Her PR for the 10K is 30:45.  

The woman with the second fastest time (31:07) on the TD Beach to Beacon course is Wude Ayalew, 25, of Ethiopia, who finished second to Chepkurai’s record setting performance in 2010. She returned a week later to beat Chepkurai at the Falmouth Road Race. Ayalew is in top form after finishing second at the 2011 All-Africa Games. She has ran 30:11 at 10,000m.  

Aberu Kebede, 22, of Ethiopia, just missed making the highly-competitive Ethiopian Olympic team and will be anxious to put on a good show, Barthlow said. Her 1:07.39 is the second fastest Half Marathon ever run by an Ethiopian. She earned a bronze in the Half at the World Championships and her 2:20:33 marathon is among the top 20 all time for women.  

Two top Russian distance athletes are in the field. Valentina Galimova, 25, is a Russian 10,000m champion who finished a disappointing fifth at the 2012 Olympic qualifier while Kseniya Agafonova, 29, a Russian indoor champ who finished fifth at 5000m at the 2007 IAAF World Athletics Final and has a PR of 31:08 at 10,000m.  

Other top contenders include: Margaret Wangari-Muriuki, 26, of Kenya, who finished sixth at the 2010 World Cross Country Championships running barefoot and second at the African Cross Country Championships earlier this year; Pauline Njeri-Kahenya, 27, of Kenya, who is on the rise after recording a PR 31:25 in Paris in April; Rita Jeptoo, 31, of Kenya, the 2006 B.A.A Boston Marathon champ who has clocked 31:12 at 10K; and Jelliah Tinega, 26, of Kenya, who finished second at the 2011 TD Beach to Beacon and has victories at the Bellin Run and Cherry Blossom 10-Mile Run already in 2012.  

A strong contingent of American women also is entered. Lindsey Sherf, 25, took fourth at the 2012 USA 15K Championship and second at the USA 25K Championship. The Harvard graduate has recorded a personal best 32:51 at 10K. Rebecca Donaghue, 36, finished fifth at the 2009 TD Beach to Beacon, which she followed up with an impressive second at Falmouth a week later. This year, she finished in the top 20 in the U.S. Olympic trials for both the marathon and 10,000m. Katie McGregor, 34, finished 11th at the U.S. Olympic marathon trials in Houston after narrowly missing the 2004 and 2008 Olympics with consecutive fourth place finishes at 10,000m, where her PR is 31:21. She took second at the 2011 USA 10K Championship.  

The professional athletes will join a race day field of 6,000 for the TD Beach to Beacon 10K, one of the gems on the U.S. road race circuit. The race begins near the Crescent Beach State Park entrance on Route 77 in Cape Elizabeth and ends 6.2 miles later in Fort Williams Park at the Portland Head Light, the most photographed lighthouse in America.

The race is directed by Dave McGillivray of DMSE Sports (, who also directs the B.A.A Boston Marathon and is regarded as one of the best in the business.


TD Bank is the title sponsor of the race founded by Olympic gold medalist and running icon Joan Benoit Samuelson, who grew up in Cape Elizabeth and trained along the same roads.


In addition to TD Bank, other major corporate partners this year include Hannaford, Poland Spring, MaineHealth, Fairchild Semiconductor, Nike, Northeast Delta Dental, IDEXX and WCSH6. For additional information about the race, visit or call the race hotline at (888) 480-6940.  

About TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank®

TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank, is one of the 10 largest banks in the U.S., providing nearly 8 million customers with a full range of retail, small business and commercial banking products and services at more than 1,280 convenient locations throughout the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Metro D.C., the Carolinas and Florida. In addition, TD Bank and its subsidiaries offer customized wealth management services through TD Wealth, insurance products and services through TD Insurance, Inc., and vehicle financing and dealer commercial services through TD Auto Finance. TD Bank is headquartered in Cherry Hill, N.J., and Portland, Maine. To learn more, find TD Bank on Facebook at, on Twitter at, or visit  

TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank, is a member of TD Bank Group and a subsidiary of The Toronto-Dominion Bank of Toronto, Canada, a top 10 financial services company in North America and one of the few banks in the world rated Aaa by Moody's. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades on the New York and Toronto stock exchanges under the ticker symbol "TD." To learn more, visit  

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The TD Charitable Foundation is funded by TD Bank N.A., which operates as TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, and is one of the 10 largest commercial banking organizations in the United States. The Foundation's mission is to serve the individuals, families and businesses in all the communities where TD Bank operates, having made $89.2 million in charitable donations since its inception in 2002. The Foundation’s areas of focus are affordable housing, financial literacy and education, and the environment. More information on the TD Charitable Foundation, including an online grant application, is available at  

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TD Beach to Beacon 10K Road Race - List of Elite Athletes – as of 7-25-12

Bib       Name                                        Age      Country             10K PR

2          Lucas Rotich                             22         Kenya               27:56   

4          Atsedu Tsegay                          20         Ethiopia            27:46   

5          Stanley Biwott                           26         Kenya               ---        

6          Ed Muge                                   29         Kenya               27:52   

7          Azmeraw Bekele                        26         Ethiopia            27:43   

8          Gebretsadik Abraha                   20         Ethiopia            28:03t  

9          Allan Kiprono                            22         Kenya               27:42   

10         Lelisa Desisa                            22         Ethiopia            27:57   

11         Silas Kipruto                             27         Kenya               27:28   

12         Vincent Yator                            22         Kenya               27:24   

13         Abera Kuma                              21         Ethiopia            27:52   

14         Lewis Nyariki                             23         Kenya               27:22t  

16         Kiplomo Kumatai                       30         Kenya               27:59   

17         Stephen Kipkosgei-Kibet           25         Kenya               27:52   

19         Sean Quigley                            27         USA                 28:03t  

20         Lani Rutto                                 23         Kenya               28:35   

22         Sammy Chelanga                      27         Kenya    28:31                 



100       Aheza Kiros                              26         Ethiopia            32:09   

102       Lineth Chepkurai                        24         Kenya               30:45   

104       Valentina Galimova                    25         Russia              32:07t  

105       Kseniya Agafonova                   29         Russia              31:08t  

106       Wude Ayalew                            25         Ethiopia            31:07   

107       Aberu Kebede                           22         Ethiopia            31:05   

108       Margaret Wangari-Muriuki           26         Kenya               31:08   

109       Malika Mejdoub                         30         Morocco           32:42   

110       Jelliah Tinega                            26         Kenya               32:17   

113       Katie McGregor                         34         USA                 31:21t  

114       Rebecca Donaghue                   36         USA                 32:29   

116       Rita Jeptoo                               31         Kenya               31:12   

117       Pauline Njeri-Kahenya                27         Kenya               31:25   

118       Esther Erb                                26         USA                 34:21   

119       Lindsey Sherf                            25         USA                 32:51                           

120       Michelle Frey                             30         USA                 35:05   

121       Renee Baillie                             30         USA                 32:44   

122       Julia Lucas                                28         USA                 33:39   

123       Jessica Minty                            28         USA                 35:14

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Images: 2016 Olympic Games