Chicago Marathon

Bank of America Chicago Marathon Elite Field Changes Announced

Seifu Tura will now race in Chicago, while Getaneh Molla has withdrawn

Bank of America Chicago Marathon officials have announced several changes to the elite field for Sunday’s race, including Getaneh Molla and Herpasa Negasa’s withdrawal from the race.

The runners, who both hail from Ethiopia, had the two best personal-records among the men’s field, but neither will participate in Sunday’s race through Chicago.

Race organizers did announce that a pair of new runners will join the field, including Seifu Tura, the Ethiopian racer who set a blistering career best time in the Dubai Marathon in 2018, crossing the line in 2:04:44.

While that result was only good for seventh in the race, Tura did win the 2018 Milan Marathon in Italy and the 2018 Shanghai International Marathon in China, giving him a pair of quality victories that he’ll look to build upon in Chicago.

Also added to the field is Ethiopia’s Dejene Debela. The 24-year-old set a personal best time of 2:07:10 in the Eindhoven Marathon in the Netherlands back in 2017. He is the defending champion at the Xiamen International Marathon in China, posting a time of 2:09:26 in the race earlier this year.

He also won the Beijing Marathon in 2018 and is currently the 45th ranked marathon runner in the world, according to the IAAF.

Hassan El Abbassi also dropped out from the marathon field, according to officials.

On the women’s side, a big name has joined the field, as Gelete Burka will race in Chicago on Sunday. Currently the sixth-ranked marathon runner in the world, Burka won the Paris Marathon earlier this year, and won the Ottawa Marathon during the 2018 season.

Her personal-best time of 2:20:45 is the second-best time in the women’s field, behind only defending Chicago Marathon champion Brigid Kosgei.

One member of the vaunted American contingent in this year’s women’s field did drop out of the race, as Maegan Krifchin will not race on Sunday.

Japan’s Sho Watanabe and Canada’s Alexandre Dupont have been added to the field for the men’s wheelchair race, and Australia’s Christie Dawes has been added to the women’s wheelchair field. Dawes could potentially make some noise in the race, as her personal best of 1:36:42 puts her at sixth-best among the competitors in the field.

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