CHANDLER, Ariz. – The Marathon Project race organizers announced today that Olympian Jared Ward has entered the race and will compete next Sunday.
Ward is one of America’s top marathoners, having finished third at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials – Marathon and sixth at the Rio Olympic Games. His personal best of 2 hours, 9 minutes, 25 seconds was set at the 2019 Boston Marathon. Ward finished a disappointing 27th at the 2020 U.S. Trials but enters The Marathon Project coming off a solid performance at the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon where he finished 17th in 2:12:38.
Ward said he is grateful for another chance to compete.
“What an opportunity for me to cap off the year 2020 with a chance to chase a marathon lifetime best,” Ward said. “I can’t say thanks enough to the race organizers and I hope everyone in the field runs a PR.”
Ward will face off against a number of formidable challengers including longtime friendly rival Scott Fauble. Ward, sixth, and Fauble, seventh, finished one place apart at the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon with Fauble turning the tables at the 2019 Boston Marathon where he was seventh and Ward was eighth. Other sub-2:10 performers in The Marathon Project field include Amanuel Mesel from Eritrea (2:08:17), Mexico’s Jose Antonio Uribe Marino (2:08:55), and the Canadian Record Holder, Cam Levins (2:09:25).
Ben Rosario, one of the race organizers, said everyone involved with the event was happy to have Ward enter the race.
“If you follow American marathoning then you follow Jared Ward, and you’re a fan,” Rosario said. “Jared is so well-liked and respected by all of his competitors that it makes it impossible not to root for him.”
Ward and all of the athletes will be competing on the fast, flat Marathon Project course in Chandler, Ariz., designed specifically for the event. The top men’s group will be aiming to break the 2:09:00 barrier.
The Marathon Project fields were limited due to COVID-19 safety guidelines, all athletes will be tested for the coronavirus prior to competing, and there will be no spectators along the course.
The race will begin at 10:00 a.m., ET with live coverage beginning on USATF.TV+ at 9:45 a.m. There will be a 90-minute replay of the race on NBC Sports Network in primetime from 7:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. ET. Live coverage on USATF.TV+ requires a USATF.TV+ Plus membership. For more information visit www.themarathonproject.com.