The 2014 athletics season will kick off on January, 2 with worlds one of the largest road races, the Xiamen International Marathon, an IAAF Gold Label road. The organizers of the Xiamen International Marathon say that a total of 77,080 runners from China and 45 countries have
signed up for the event.
High profile top overseas runners (21
man and 8 women) from Kenya, Ethiopia, Morocco, Turkey, South Africa, and
Eritrea are among 77,000 athletes who will battle for US $40,000 winners prize money. There is also award of 10,000 USD to male runners who finish
the race between 2:07:32- 2:08:30 and female runners who will finish the race
between 2:22:38 - 2:23:30. Although no world records are expected, the Chinese offere US $1 million for setting a
new world record. It is the largest prize money ever offered for setting a world record in a marathon race.
Ethiopia’s Negesse Shumi
Endeshaw is the top male runner with a PR of 2:04:52 he set last year at the Dubai Marathon.
The Women's race will feature Mare Dibaba
Hurssa, also from Ethiopian, who finished 3rd in the Dubai
Marathon 2012 with a spectacular time of 02:19:52.