Thursday, May 5, 2011

"Rising Star" Curtis Ready for Healthy Kidney 10K in NYC

Pro Field Announced for Healthy Kidney 10k

New York, May 4, 2011-The two fastest men in history at 10K on the road, Kenyans Leonard Patrick Komon and Micah Kogo, will go head-to-head at the UAE Healthy Kidney 10K on Saturday, May 14, in Central Park to compete for a $25,000 first-place prize, the biggest winner’s purse at any 10K race in the world, it was announced today by New York Road Runners president and CEO Mary Wittenberg.

“It should be fast times in Central Park with bragging rights between Leonard and Micah at stake along with the $20,000 Zayed Bonus for beating the Central Park record,” said Wittenberg. “Add red hot Bobby Curtis and Ben St. Lawrence and one of our favorites, Abdi Abdirahman, to the field and it promises to be a sizzling run.”

After an injury-shortened 2010 season, Abdi Abdirahman, 34, of Tucson, AZ, returns for his third UAE Healthy Kidney 10K as he continues his comeback season with an eye to making a fourth USA Olympic team in 2012. Abdirahman finished sixth in last year’s race and won the 2009 U.S. 10K Championship in a time of 28:11.

Leading the challenge from the rising stars will be American Bobby Curtis, 27, of Ardmore, PA. Curtis became the seventh-fastest American of all time at 10,000 meters when he ran 27:24.67 to finish second at the Payton Jordan Invitational last weekend. Currently the third-fastest 5K runner in the world for 2011, the two-time Team USA member for the IAAF World Cross Country Championships won the 2008 NCAA Championship at 5000 meters in 13:33.93.

“I feel I have stepped things up a notch this year and I think that showed at Stanford,” said Curtis. “Now I’m looking forward to testing myself against even stronger opposition on the roads of Central Park. Last year the 10,000 meters at Stanford took a lot out of me and I wasn’t able to produce my best in the UAE Healthy Kidney 10K, but this year I feel so much fitter and I think I’ll be ready to really challenge there.”

Ben St. Lawrence, 29, of Australia, currently the second-fastest 5000-meter runner in the world for 2011, will look to improve upon last year’s performance when he makes his second start at the UAE Healthy Kidney 10K. In 2010, St. Lawrence finished seventh in the race in a time of 28:36. He finished third in the Payton Jordan Invitational 10,000 meters last weekend, a step behind his training partner Curtis, in an Australian-record time of 27:24.95.

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