Defending Champions Highlight Top Contenders in 2014 Boston Marathon Push Rim Wheelchair Division

Contact Info:
Marc Davis (Communications Manager)
Boston Athletic Association
185 Dartmouth Street, 6th Floor
Boston MA 02116
04 APR 2014
Tatyana McFadden (USA) and Hiroyuki Yamamoto (JPN) to defend their titles. Field of 63 athletes will compete for a $60,000 (USD) prize purse.

BOSTON – The Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) today announced that defending push rim wheelchair division champions Tatyana McFadden (USA) and Hiroyuki Yamamoto (JPN) will compete in the 2014 Boston Marathon® on Monday, April 21. McFadden and Yamamoto will lead a field size of 63 athletes that also includes past Boston Marathon champions, world champions, Paralympic champions, and world record holders. For the 29th consecutive year, principal sponsor John Hancock Financial Services will provide the prize purse for the race. The men’s and women’s champion will each win $15,000 (USD) in prize money. The wheelchair division awards a total of $60,000 (USD) in 2014.

McFadden, 25, won the 2013 Boston Marathon in 1:45:25 and went on to complete an unprecedented “Grand Slam,” winning the London, Chicago, and New York City Marathons in the same calendar year. McFadden also won a record six gold medals in events ranging from 100 meters to 5,000 meters at the 2013 IPC World Championships in Lyon, France.

Other top contenders on the women’s side include Wakako Tsuchida (JPN), five-time Boston Marathon champion and course record holder (1:34:06); 2013 IPC World Championships marathon gold medalist Manuela Schaer (SUI); and Shirley Reilly (USA), winner of the Boston and London Paralympics marathons in 2012. Also highlighting the field are Sandra Graf (SUI), 2013 Boston Marathon runner-up; Amanda McGrory (USA), two-time London Marathon champion; and Susannah Scaroni (USA), 2013 Los Angeles Marathon champion.

Yamamoto, 47, won last year’s Boston Marathon in 1:25:32, claiming his first major marathon victory in his Boston debut by nearly two minutes. David Weir (GBR), six-time London Marathon champion and winner of six gold medals at the 2012 London Paralympics, and Ernst Van Dyk (RSA), nine-time Boston Marathon champion and last year’s runner-up, will look to challenge Yamamoto. Van Dyk has won more Boston Marathon titles than any other athlete in history.

Other top contenders in the men’s push rim wheelchair division include Joshua Cassidy (CAN), who set a world best time of 1:18:25 in winning the 2012 Boston Marathon; two-time Boston Marathon champion Masazumi Soejima (JPN); and Marcel Hug (SUI), 2013 IPC World Championships and New York City Marathon champion. Kota Hokinoue (JPN), last year’s Boston Marathon third place finisher; Tomasz Hamerlak (POL), silver medalist in the 2013 IPC World Championships Marathon; and Denis Leumeunier (FRA), 2001 London Marathon champion also figure to be in contention on the men’s side.

For the second consecutive year, the Boston Marathon is part of the Boston-London Wheelchair Challenge, a two-race competition offers an additional $35,000 (USD) in prize money to elite wheelchair marathoners who compete in both at London on Sunday, April 13, 2014 and the 2014 Boston Marathon eight days later. The men’s and women’s champions of the competition will each win an additional $10,000 (USD) in prize money.

In the event of a tie for position, prize money will be added together and divided equally. If, for example, there is a tie between two athletes for first place, the first and second place prize money will be added together and divided by two. The next highest scoring athlete will be awarded the third place prize money.

McFadden won last year’s women’s competition in the Boston-London Wheelchair Challenge with 40 cumulative points. Kurt Fearnley (AUS) won the men’s competition with 28 cumulative points, following a fifth place finish in Boston and a victory in London six days later.

The Boston Marathon became the first major marathon to include a wheelchair division in 1975 when Bob Hall (MA) became the first officially recognized participant to use a wheelchair. Through the continued support of principal sponsor John Hancock, the Boston Marathon has offered prize money to push rim wheelchair division competitors since 1986.

2014 Boston Marathon Push Rim Wheelchair Division Prize Structure (USD)

1 $15,000 $15,000
2 $6,500 $6,500
3 $2,500 $2,500
4 $1,500 $1,500
5 $1,000 $1,000
6 $900 $900
7 $800 $800
8 $700 $700
9 $600 $600
10 $500 $500
TOTAL $30,000 $30,000
GRAND TOTAL = $60,000

2014 Boston-London Wheelchair Challenge Points Structure

1 20
2 15
3 10
4 9
5 8
6 7
7 6
8 5
9 4
10 3

2014 Boston-London Wheelchair Challenge Prize Structure (USD)

1 $10,000
2 $5,000
3 $2,500

B.A.A. Moment 2

1935 John A. Kelley

Born in West Medford, Massachusetts as one of ten children, Kelley ran track and cross-country at Arlington High School in Massachusetts. He did not finish his first Boston Marathon in 1928, but eventually competed in a record 61 Boston Marathons. A legend of the marathon, Kelley won the 1935 and 1945 runnings of the Boston Marathon. He finished in second place at Boston a record seven times. Between 1934 to 1950, he finished in the top five 15 times at Boston, consistently running in the 2:30s. He ran his last full marathon at Boston in 1992 at the age of 84, his 61st start and 58th finish there.