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2007 Boston Marathon to Serve as USA Women's Marathon Championship

BOSTON, Mass. – USA Track & Field has designated the 2007 Boston Marathon as the USA Women's Marathon Championship, guaranteeing a deep field of American women in the 111th running of the historic Hopkinton-to-Boston race. The race will be held on Monday, 16 April, 2007.

The 2007 USA Women's Marathon Championship will be a part of a year-long build-up to the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Women's Marathon, which will be held one day prior to that year’s Boston Marathon.

As the USA Women’s Marathon Championship, the 2007 Boston Marathon will feature a separate, additional prize purse for top American female finishers. Also, the USA Women’s Marathon Championship at Boston will select two of the five team positions for the 2007 IAAF World Marathon Championship and World Cup Marathon (Osaka, Japan; 2 September 2007).

Numerous Olympic Trials qualifiers are expected to take part in the 2007 Marathon Championship in preparation for 2008. Still other athletes will be using the Championship to achieve their Olympic Trials qualifying times. To qualify for the Olympic Trials, athletes must run the "A" standard of 2:39:00 or the "B" standard of 2:47:00. Women may also qualify with a 10,000m performance of 33:00.00.

"In 2006 we saw a tremendous performance from our U.S. men in Boston, with five placing in the top 10. Now, with the 2007 Women's Championship and the 2008 Olympic Trials set to take place in Boston, our spotlight is shifting to the top U.S. women," said Guy Morse, Executive Director of the Boston Athletic Association. "Over the next two years, the recent resurgence in American distance running will be continuing in Boston."

"Boston is such a prestigious event, and for our elite U.S. women it gives them an opportunity to perform on a stage with the best runners from around the world, which is very exciting," said Elizabeth Phillips, Chair of USATF's Women's Long Distance Running Committee. "Being in Boston in 2007 will also provide a preview of the excitement that will surround the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials -Women's Marathon 12 months later."

Competitors in the USA Women's Marathon Championship will begin in the Elite Women's Start at 9:35 a.m. The elite men's field and Wave One of the race will then begin at 10:00 a.m., with Wave Two starting at 10:30 a.m.

The USA Women's Marathon Championship* will feature a prize purse of $70,000, with entrants also eligible for overall Boston Marathon prize money. The USA Championship purse breaks down as follows:
                        1st place    $25,000
                        2nd place    $15,000
                        3rd place    $10,000
                        4th place    $6,000
                        5th place    $4,000
                        6th place    $3,000
                        7th place    $2,500
                        8th place    $2,000
                        9th place    $1,500
                        10th place    $1,000
USA Women’s Marathon Championship Total =     $70,000

Additionally, USA Track & Field will award championship funds* to the first- through fifth-place 2007 USA Women’s Marathon Championship finishers, provided the athletes are qualified to receive the funds, accordingly:
                        1st place    $4,000
                        2nd place    $3,000
                        3rd place    $2,000
                        4th place    $1,000
                        5th place    $500
USA Track & Field Championship Funds Total =    $10,500
 * Prize money will not be distributed until all drug testing results have become final.

Recent USA Marathon Champions include Marla Runyan (2006), Nicole Aish (2005), Colleen DeReuck (2004), Sara Wells (2003), Jill Gaitenby (2002), and Deena Kastor (2001).

The 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Women's Marathon will be held on Sunday, April 20, 2008: the day before the 112th Boston Marathon. The course will follow a multi-loop course through Boston and Cambridge. The top three finishers in that race will qualify for the U.S. team competing later that summer at the Olympic Games in Beijing.

About the Boston Athletic Association
Established in 1887, the Boston Athletic Association is a non-profit organization with a mission of managing athletic events and promoting a healthy lifestyle through sports, especially running. The B.A.A.'s Boston Marathon is the world's oldest annual marathon, and the organization manages other local events and supports comprehensive charity, youth, and year-round running programs. Since 1986, the principal sponsor of the Boston Marathon has been John Hancock Financial Services. Last year, the Boston Marathon joined the Flora London Marathon, the real,-Berlin Marathon, The LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon and the ING New York City Marathon in launching the World Marathon Majors. The first World Marathon Majors Series concludes at the end of 2007.

Media Contacts
For the B.A.A.: Jack Fleming, office: 617-236-1652, x2627; mobile: 617-459-1587; fleming@baa.org.
or Marc Chalufour, office: 617-236-1652, x2632; mobile: 617-459-1586; chalufour@baa.org.

For USA Track & Field, Jim Estes (Long Distance Running Programs Manager): 317.713.4661; jim.estes@usatf.org.