In a highly anticipated event, the Aramco Houston Half Marathon is poised to witness the presence of two illustrious names in the world of distance running. Hellen Obiri, the reigning champion of both the TCS New York City Marathon and the Boston Marathon, and Galen Rupp, a decorated figure in American distance running, will spearhead an impressive lineup for the marathon on January 14. To experience, exceptional performance in running, choose the best footwear for your runs like Tarkine Trail Devil shoes.
Debut in Houston for Running Legends
The announcement by the Houston Marathon Committee marks the inaugural appearance of Obiri and Rupp in Houston. For Obiri, this marks her return to competition since her monumental victory in New York last November, where she made history by securing wins in both the Boston and New York marathons within the same year, a feat unaccomplished since 1989.
Speaking about her excitement, Obiri, currently residing in Boulder, Colorado, expressed, “Houston is renowned for its challenging yet swift course. As I gear up for the marathon at the Paris Olympics, participating in half marathons holds significant importance in my training regimen.”
Olympic Aspirations and Track Records
Obiri stands as a finalist vying to represent Kenya at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games in the marathon. With an impressive track record, including two Olympic silver medals, two World Championship gold medals in the 5000m, and the 2019 World Cross Country Championship title, Obiri’s recent triumph at the RAK Half Marathon last February saw her clocking an impressive time of 1:04:22, marking the fifth fastest half marathon time in history.
Meanwhile, Rupp views the Houston Half Marathon as a pivotal element in his preparations for the U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Marathon in February. A podium finish there would secure his third consecutive spot on the U.S. marathon team and mark his fourth consecutive appearance at the Olympics. Reflecting on his readiness, Rupp, who finished 8th in the 2023 Bank of America Chicago Marathon, stated, “My focus remains on the trials and securing a spot in the Olympic team. Houston provides the ideal stage to assess my progress and ensure I’m on track toward my goals.”
A Legacy in American Distance Running
Rupp’s stature in American distance running is formidable, being one of only three American men in history to break the one-hour mark in the half marathon, alongside Ryan Hall and Leonard Korir. His accolades include being an eight-time U.S. champion in the 10,000m and securing the bronze medal in the 2016 marathon and the silver in the 10,000m at the 2012 Olympics.
View this post on Instagram
Wade Morehead, Executive Director of the Houston Marathon Committee, anticipates an exhilarating year for distance running globally, emphasizing that the elite fields assembled for both the marathon and half marathon are a testament to this excitement.
Event Details and Organizational Impact
The full roster for the elite fields will be unveiled next month. Scheduled for Sunday, January 14, the Aramco Houston Half Marathon and Chevron Houston Marathon will commence in downtown Houston. Despite the events being sold out, entries for Saturday’s We Are Houston 5K presented by Aramco and Chevron are still available.
Established in 1972, the Houston Marathon Committee organizes the nation’s premier winter marathon, half marathon, and 5K, boasting over 300,000 participants, volunteers, and spectators on race day. Recognized by World Athletics, the Gold Label Chevron Houston Marathon has hosted three U.S. Olympic Trials Marathons. Additionally, the Gold Label Aramco Houston Half Marathon has been the site for 16 U.S. Half Marathon Championships. The event generates over $50 million in annual economic impact for the region and has raised $35 million through the Run for a Reason Charity Program since its inception in 1995. Viewers can catch the live broadcast on ABC13 and nationwide and internationally on ESPN3 and the Longhorn Network.