Boston Champions & Global Stars Set to Square Off at 128th Boston Marathon presented by Bank of America

128th Boston Marathon Professional Men's Field

Evans Chebet, Marcel Hug, Sisay Lemma among those competing in the Professional Men's Field on Patriots' Day

BOSTON— A fast and accomplished professional men’s field will take center stage at the 128th Boston Marathon presented by Bank of America, featuring two-time defending open champion Evans Chebet, wheelchair course record holder Marcel Hug, and the world’s fourth-fastest man Sisay Lemma. Marathon winners from around the world and rising stars will compete as part of the Bank of America Professional Athlete Team.

“Record holders on the national and world stage will come together in pursuit of the olive wreath on Patriots’ Day,” said Jack Fleming, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Boston Athletic Association. “The men’s professional field features athletes from 28 countries, and blends a mix of Boston veterans and high-profile debutants. We’re anticipating great competition across the Open, Wheelchair, and Para Athletics Divisions.”

“When this field toes the line in Hopkinton for the start of the 128th Boston Marathon, the eyes of the world will be watching,” said David Tyrie, chief digital officer and chief marketing officer, Bank of America. “This year’s race and its impact on the global community is shaping up to be second to none.”
 

EVANS CHEBET AIMS FOR THREE-PEAT

Two-time defending champion Evans Chebet made history in 2023, crossing the finish in 2:05:54 to become the first men’s repeat winner since Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot won three-in-a-row between 2006 and 2008. A prolific racer, Chebet has won six of his last seven marathons and knows the Hopkinton-to-Boston route well. A year ago he pressed the pace over the final five kilometers to secure victory. 

“Boston has become like a second home to me and running in Boston is always special – returning as reigning champion even more so,” said Chebet. “Even after having run 28 marathons during my career, the chance to race the 29th in Boston and the fans there give me the motivation necessary to prepare to defend my title. I look forward to hitting the streets there this spring and hearing the enthusiastic crowds along the course.”

Sisay Lemma is coming off a memorable win at the Valencia Marathon in 2:01:48, making him the fourth fastest marathoner in history. He was champion of the TCS London Marathon in 2021 and leads a field of 20 men whose personal bests are below 2:10:00.

From Tanzania is 2023 Boston Marathon runner-up and national record holder Gabriel Geay, whose 2:03:00 lifetime best matches that of Chebet. A mainstay on the Boston road racing scene, he’s also won the B.A.A. 10K twice and finished on the podium of the BA.A. Half Marathon twice. Rounding out the men with sub-2:05 lifetime bests are Kenya’s Ronald Korir (2:04:22) and Cybrian Kotut (2:04:34), as well as Ethiopians Haftu Teklu (2:04:43) and London and New York City runner-up Shura Kitata (2:04:49).

Adding to the international field is Olympian and former Japanese marathon national record holder Suguru Osako, who has podiumed in Boston, Chicago, and Tokyo; Norwegian Olympic marathoner Sondre Moen; TCS New York City champion Albert Korir, who was fourth place in 2023; and Zouhair Talbi of Morocco who took fifth place in 2023 and won the Houston Marathon in a course record 2:06:39 last week. Edward Cheserek, the 22-time NCAA Champion at Oregon, will make his Boston Marathon debut.

Representing the USA is B.A.A. High Performance Team member Matt McDonald, a 2:09:49 marathoner. CJ Albertson, the world record holder at 50K (31.07 miles) who led the first 20 miles of the 2021 Boston Marathon, will race two months after competing in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Marathon

“As a member of the B.A.A. who lives and trains in Boston, I can’t imagine spending Patriots’ Day doing anything other than running the Boston Marathon,” said McDonald.

HUG RETURNS AFTER BREAKING COURSE RECORD IN 2023

Marcel Hug re-wrote the record books in 2023, blitzing a course record of 1:17:06 to claim the sixth Boston Marathon Wheelchair Division title of his career. The Swiss sensation and reigning Paralympic marathon gold medalist will seek another win in April.

“The Boston Marathon will be my first Abbott World Marathon Major in this Paralympic year,” said Hug. “To cross the finish line first would not only mean to win an iconic and most historic marathon but also to have a good start into this important season giving a mental boost. That’s why I give extra effort in my preparation to make it happen.”

Hug will go against a pair of Team USA 2024 Paralympians: Daniel Romanchuk and Aaron Pike.  Romanchuk is a two-time Boston Marathon champion (2019 and 2022), while Pike placed a career best second at Boston in 2022.

Dutchman Jetze Plat, third last year, and Canadian Josh Cassidy, a Boston champion, also return, as does 2023 fifth-place finisher Sho Watanabe of Japan.

PARA ATHLETICS DIVISION CHAMPIONS RETURN

A number of Para Athletics Division champions from recent years will compete once again on the roads from Hopkinton and Boston. From Morocco is El Amin Chentouf, the T11/T12 (vision impairment) champion who finished 50th overall in 2:31:35 in 2023. He’ll race Chaz Davis, a 2016 Paralympian and 2:31:48 marathoner originally from Massachusetts.

Half marathon and 10K world record holder Brian Reynolds will again battle Marko Cheseto Lemtukei for top honors in the T62 (lower limb impairment) classification. Cheseto Lemtukei won last year’s title in 2:50:02.

“The beauty of our diversity is reflected at the start line of Boston marathon, it doesn’t matter what people are missing, what matters is how different abilities are combined together to create a memorable marathon,” said Cheseto Lemtukei.

From Ethiopia is Atsbha Gebre Gebremeskel, the reigning T46 (upper limb impairment) winner in 2:43:57 last year.

BANK OF AMERICA SUPPORTING ALL PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES

Boston Marathon presenting partner Bank of America is supporting all top contenders as part of the Bank of America Professional Athlete Team. Athletes in the Open, Wheelchair, and Para Athletics Divisions will be competing for more than $1 million in prize money.

A course record bonus of $50,000 is available for open and wheelchair athletes, and Para Athletics Division prize money will be offered across seven impairment classifications (increased from five in previous years). A complete prize purse breakdown is available here.

128th Boston Marathon Professional Men’s Fields

Men’s Open Division

Country

Personal Best

Sisay Lemma

ETH

2:01:48 (Valencia, 2023)

Evans Chebet

KEN

2:03:00 (Valencia, 2020)

Gabriel Geay

TAN

2:03:00 (Valencia, 2022) NR

Ronald Korir

KEN

2:04:22 (Berlin, 2023)

Cybrian Kotut

KEN

2:04:34 (Amsterdam, 2023)

Haftu Teklu

ETH

2:04:43 (Berlin, 2023)

Shura Kitata

ETH

2:04:49 (London, 2018)

John Korir

KEN

2:05:01 (Chicago, 2022)

Mohamed Esa

ETH

2:05:05 (Amsterdam, 2022)

Suguru Osako

JPN

2:05:29 (Tokyo, 2020)

Sondre Moen

NOR

2:05:48 (Fukuoka, 2017) AR

Filmon Ande

ERI

2:06:38 (Barcelona, 2021)

Zouhair Talbi

MAR

2:06:39 (Houston, 2024)

Isaac Mpofu

ZIM

2:06:48 (Valencia, 2022) NR

Albert Korir

KEN

2:06:57 (New York City, 2023)

Kento Otsu

JPN

2:08:15 (Otsu, 2021)

Ryoma Takeuchi

JPN

2:08:40 (Hofu, 2023)

Segundo Jami

ECU

2:09:05 (Valencia, 2023) NR

Tsegay Tuemay

ERI

2:09:07 (Daegu, 2019)

Matt McDonald

USA

2:09:49 (Chicago, 2022)

David Nilsson

SWE

2:10:09 (Valencia, 2020)

Tristan Woodfine

CAN

2:10:39 (Houston, 2024)

CJ Albertson

USA

2:10:52 (Duluth, 2022)

Chris Thompson

GBR

2:10:52 (London, 2021)

Edward Cheserek

KEN

2:11:07 (New York City, 2023)

Nick Hauger

USA

2:12:59 (Sacramento, 2021)

Giovanni Grano

ITA

2:13:18 (Valencia, 2023)

Will Nation

USA

2:13:24 (Sacramento, 2021)

Joseph Whelan

USA

2:13:39 (Duluth, 2019)

Ilie Alexandru Corneschi

ROU

2:13:39 (Berlin, 2022)

Patrick Smyth

USA

2:13:47 (Sacramento, 2019)

Robert Miranda

USA

2:14:43 (Sacramento, 2023)

Kristoffer Mugrage

USA

2:15:17 (Sacramento, 2022)

Craig Hunt

USA

2:15:29 (Chandler, 2020)

Primoz Kobe

SLO

2:15:37 (Rotterdam, 2022)*

Aaron Gruen

USA

2:15:56 (Valley Cottage, 2023)

Lorenz Baum

GER

2:15:57 (Cologne, 2023)

Taiyo Akiyama

JPN

2:16:03 (Tokyo, 2023)

Andrew McCann

USA

2:17:07 (Sacramento, 2022)

Matt Rand

USA

2:17:11 (Valley Cottage, 2023)

Ryan Eiler

USA

2:17:16 (Philadelphia, 2023)

Prescott Leach

USA

2:17:30 (Sacramento, 2023)*

Qianyu Cheng

CHN

2:17:33 (Hangzhou, 2022)

Jason Ayr

USA

2:18:14 (Houston, 2022)

Grant O'Connor

USA

2:18:28 (Jersey City, 2023)

Mauricio Mendez Cruz

MEX

2:18:36 (Berlin, 2022)

Jared Schatz

USA

2:18:49 (Valley Cottage, 2023)

Jonathan Kotter

USA

2:19:00 (St. George, 2022)

Brad Kahlefeldt

AUS

2:19:30 (Zurich, 2023)*

Miguel Morone

BRA

2:19:33 (Berlin, 2023)*

Dustin Bybee

USA

2:19:48 (St. George, 2023)*

Giles Rubio

FRA

2:20:14 (Valencia, 2022)*

Joel Conn

USA

2:20:16 Duluth, 2023)*

Tyler Butterfield

BER

2:21:47 (Otsu, 2019)* NR

Miguel Ferrer Muro

ESP

2:21:47 (Valencia, 2022)*

Roman Fosti

EST

2:22:16 (Tallinn, 2023)*

Meng-Tsung (Steve) Chu

TWN

2:22:54 (Edmonton, 2023)*

Yemane Haileselassie

ERI

Debut

*Denotes Masters Division (40+)

 

Men’s Wheelchair Division

Country

Personal Best

Classification

Marcel Hug

SUI

1:17:06

T54

Aaron Pike

USA

1:20:02

T54

Johnboy Smith

GBR

1:20:05

T54

Kota Hokinoue

JPN

1:20:54

T54

Daniel Romanchuk

USA

1:21:36

T54

Rafael Botello Jimenez

ESP

1:22:09

T54

Jordi Madera

ESP

1:22:10

T54

Patrick Monahan

IRL

1:22:23

T53

Sho Watanabe

JPN

1:24:00

T54

Hermin Garic

USA

1:24:18

T53

Jeyna Senbeta

USA

1:24:27

T54

Jetze Plat

NED

1:24:28

T54

Simon Lawson

GBR

1:25:06

T53

David Weir

GBR

1:26:17

T54

Brian Siemann

USA

1:26:46

T53

Evan Correll

USA

1:27:19

T54

Jason Robinson

USA

1:29:01

T54

Phillip Croft

USA

1:30:14

T53

Jake Lappin

AUS

1:31:17

T54

Sean Frame

GBR

1:31:18

T54

Wyatt Willand

USA

1:31:50

T53

Mark Millar

IRL

1:33:50

T54

Santiago Sanz

ESP

1:42:05

T52

Dustin Stallberg

USA

1:44:28

T54

Fidel Aguilar Zepeda

MEX

1:45:46

T53

Aidan Gravelle

USA

1:48:04

T54

Isaiah Rigo

USA

2:14:36

T52

 

Para Athletics Divisions

Country

Classification

El Amin Chentouf

MAR

T12 (Vision Impairment)

Chaz Davis

USA

T12 (Vision Impairment)

Andrew Thorsen

USA

T13 (Vision Impairment)

Thomas Cantara

USA

T20 (Intellectual Impairment)

Marko Cheseto Lemtukei

USA

T62 (Lower-limb Impairment)

Brian Reynolds

USA

T62 (Lower-limb Impairment)

Adam Popp

USA

T63 (Lower-limb Impairment)

Atsbha Gebre Gebremeskel

ETH

T46 (Upper-limb Impairment)