The California International Marathon is an annual favourite of American runners who look for personal bests or for US Olympic Marathon Trials qualification for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, which will take place on February 29, 2020, in Atlanta, GA.

According to the entry list, below 40 men have run 2:20 or faster. Ten have run 2:15 or faster. Twenty-three women have run 2:45 or faster.

Three men and three women can be selected in the Trials for the Olympics.

The net downhill and point-to-point CIM marathon is a fast course that does not count towards qualification for world championships or the Olympics in some countries, but performances are permitted to into the US Trials.

California International Marathon release:

The 37th annual California International Marathon returns CIM top performers, 2015 CIM Champion Elisha Barno and 2014 runner-up Jane Kibii, while also serving as one of the last opportunities for American athletes to qualify for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials.

“This should be a unique and exciting year at CIM with a mix of steady vets returning to ‘The Fastest Course in the West’ as well as a flood of ‘dream chasers’ entering the ‘OTQ Factory’ for a last chance at earning a trip to the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta in February,” said SRA Executive Director Scott Abbott.

Favorites to win the men’s race include Kenyan natives Elisha Barno and Denis Chirchir. Barno holds a personal best marathon time of 2:09:32 set in 2018, and has had past success at CIM, winning the race in 2015 and finishing runner-up in 2016. Denis Chirchir, who ran 2:13:50 earlier this fall, will be making his first appearance at CIM and is expected to battle up front with Barno.

Barno and Chirchir will likely be challenged by American runners C.J. Albertson, Colin Mickow, and Patrick Smyth, who are currently in the midst of breakthrough seasons. Albertson of Fresno, Calif and Mickow of Naperville, Ill. ran personal best marathons earlier this fall with 2:14:49 and 2:14:55 finishes, respectively. Smyth, who hails from Santa Fe, N.M., ran a personal best half-marathon time of 1:02:39 in early November of this year.

The women’s race is headlined by local athlete Jane Kibii, who represents Kenya in international competition and lives in Auburn, Calif., less than twenty miles from the CIM start line. Kibii returns to CIM with the goal of capturing her first CIM title. Like Barno, Kibii has proven herself on the CIM course, with finishes of 2nd (2014) and 3rd (2015) to go along with her personal best marathon time of 2:30:01.

“I love running in my hometown and feeling the local support,” said Kibii. “I have raced CIM twice and this time around I want to go for a win.”

Other women to look for upfront on December 8 include Obsie Birru from Phoenix, Ariz. who ran a personal best 2:35:51 at the Twin Cities Marathon in October and Katja Goldring (Flagstaff, Ariz.) who holds a personal best time of 2:35:21. Two marathon debutants, Kaitlyn Peale (Portland, Ore.) and Ivette Mejia (New York), could also be factors upfront with personal best half-marathon times of 1:13:09 and 1:13:36, respectively.

Beyond the competition for the $70,000 prize purse available to the men’s and women’s fields, hundreds of American runners will toe the line at the 2019 CIM hoping to qualify for the 2020 U.S. Marathon Olympic Trials. Men need to run 2:19:00 or faster and women need to run 2:45:00 or faster to qualify.

In 2018, CIM had a record number of U.S. athletes run an Olympic Trials Qualifier (OTQ), with 99 American women and 53 American men running under the qualifying standards. With the qualification window closing in January, the 2019 CIM will be many athletes’ last shot.

“The past few years have shown that CIM is the perfect place to chase an OTQ,” said Olympic Trials hopeful Peter Bromka. “Not only the course and the weather, but every detail of the race is carefully considered by the organizers to help athletes run fast. Once the gun goes off, packs of hopefuls form and work together every mile to the capitol.”

Athletes who run a U.S. Olympic Marathon Qualifying time at the 2019 CIM will earn a special $404 bonus for their trip to ‘The 404’ from the CIM and its official race partner Nuun.

“At Nuun we are on a mission to empower everyone to move more and are honored to partner with the team at CIM to support the runners earning their spot at the Olympic Trials in Sacramento,” said Kevin Rutherford, Nuun President, and CEO. “We are motivated by the hard work and resilience of these athletes to accomplish such a remarkable goal, and look forward to celebrating with them in Atlanta.”

Athletes who run a qualifying time will compete for a spot on the 2020 USA Olympic Marathon team on February 29, 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia. The top three men and top three women finishers in Atlanta will compete for Team USA at the Olympic Games in Tokyo.

The Sacramento Running Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to finding ways to encourage people of all ages and abilities to run. The SRA is committed to developing new, quality running events that appeal to a broad variety of runners.

2019 CIM Elite Field:

Men’s Elite Field
Elisha Barno, 2:09:32
Josphat Boit, 2:12:52
Andrew Lemoncello, 2:13:40
Patrick Rizzo, 2:13:42
Denis Chirchir, 2:13:50
Blair Morgan, 2:14:22
Max King, 2:14:34
CJ Albertson, 2:14:49
Colin Mickow, 2:14:55
Patrick Smyth, 2:15:00
Jake Schmitt, 2:15:09
Craig Hunt, 2:15:26
Zachary Hine, 2:16:40
Dylan Belles, 2:16:59
Brett Lustgarten, 2:17:17
Dan Harper, 2:17:30
Matthew Dewald, 2:17:42
Jarred Iacovelli, 2:18:15
Jacob Puzey, 2:18:17
Joseph Moore, 2:18:21
Mike Morgan, 2:18:29
Kenneth Kosgei, 2:18:31
Benjamin Zywicki, 2:18:35
Ruben Sanca, 2:18:47
Anthony Tomsich, 2:18:49
Grayson Hough, 2:18:59
Sean Swift, 2:19:08
Brandon Wolfe, 2:19:10
Argeo Cruz, 2:19:18
Alexander Diltz, 2:19:26
Adam Bohach, 2:19:28
Mizael Carrera, 2:19:29
Ethan Coffey, 2:19:34
Jason Ayr, 2:19:35
Peter Bromka, 2:19:40
Kenneth Foster, 2:19:49
Adam Schroer, 2:19:50
Matt Hensley, 2:19:51
Tanner Fruit, 2:19:52
Ian Carter, 2:20:00
Jonathan Briskman, 2:20:18
John Busque, 2:20:24
Patrick Hearn, 2:20:27
Blake Jorgensen, 2:21:00
Nathan Peters, 2:21:02
Eric Noel, 2:21:05
Clint Wells, 2:21:27
Charlie Hurt, 2:21:29
Scott Leslie, 2:21:39
David Marley, 2:21:55
Christopher Yates, 2:21:57
Jorge Maravilla, 2:21:57
Kristoffer Mugrage, 2:21:57
Michael Roda, 2:22:00
Chris Retzlaff, 2:22:01
Tate Schienbein, 2:22:01
Vincent Hamilton, 2:22:07
Justin Wiens, 2:22:13
Jason McLeod, 2:22:22
Kallin Khan, 2:22:28
Josh Baden, 2:22:32
Nicholas Spector, 2:22:44
Brian Finnel, 2:22:48
Jaydn Asay, 2:22:49
Benjamin Heck, 2:22:55
Joshua Hibbs, 2:22:56
Ryan Place, 2:23:05
Matt Barrett, 2:23:09
Arturs Bareikis, 2:23:15
James Stevenson, 2:23:17
Brent Martin, 2:23:19
Niko Jeftich, 2:23:44
Samuel Mueller, 2:23:46
David Kiplagat, 2:23:51
Mark Messmer, 2:23:59
Juan Paredes, 2:24:00
Matt McWilliams, 2:24:04
Michael Morris, 2:24:04
Everett Hackett, 2:24:05
Clint McKelvey, 2:24:22
Jonathan McGinnis, 2:24:52
Caleb Hoover, 2:24:58
Christopher Sloane, 2:25:05
Thomas Rivers Puzey, 2:25:05
Isidore Herrera, 2:25:32
Brandon Krage, DEBUT
Chris Melgares, DEBUT
Dave Marks, DEBUT
David Melly, DEBUT
Duriel Hardy, DEBUT
Mike Hardy, DEBUT
Nicholas Scarpello, DEBUT
Nick Golebiowski, DEBUT
Nick Ross, DEBUT
Sean Davidson, DEBUT
Tom Slattery, DEBUT
Trevor Halsted, DEBUT
Tyler Morse, DEBUT

Women’s Elite Field
Jane Kibii, 2:30:01
Stephanie Pezzullo, 2:32:42
Katja Goldring, 2:35:21
Obsie Birru, 2:35:51
Julia Budniak, 2:39:10
Christine Ramsey, 2:39:31
Jen Rock, 2:39:46
Heather Cappello, 2:40:00
Aubrey Lemine, 2:40:14
Brittany Moran, 2:40:46
Lindsay Tollefson, 2:41:31
Phebe Ko, 2:41:42
Jo Butler, 2:41:57
Shaluinn Fullove, 2:41:57
Andrea Toppin, 2:42:12
Heather Tanner, 2:42:19
Allison (Ali) Drynan, 2:42:46
Taylor Bickford, 2:42:50
Tonya Nero, 2:43:12
Leanne Klassen, 2:44:07
Kari Hamilton, 2:44:14
Ailsa MacDonald, 2:44:56
Elizabeth Wasserman, 2:45:00
Kristin Johansen, 2:45:08
Elle Ellender, 2:45:12
Mary Schneider, 2:45:12
Angela Moll, 2:45:16
Holly Davis, 2:45:17
Kayla Lampe, 2:45:19
Shannon Bain, 2:45:21
Liza Howard, 2:45:22
Caroline Williams, 2:45:26
Elizabeth Berkholtz, 2:45:27
Kinjal Parikh, 2:45:31
Maria Malone, 2:45:32
Maggie Shearer, 2:45:33
Carter Norbo, 2:45:34
Susie Rivard, 2:45:39
Amber Morrison, 2:45:45
Ayisha Mitchell, 2:45:49
Amber Zimmerman, 2:45:54
Anne Marie Everhart, 2:45:56
Kati Snyder, 2:46:13
Meriah Earle, 2:46:14
Hayley Germack, 2:46:17
Rachel Mitchell, 2:46:19
Chandler Carreon, 2:46:21
Bridget End, 2:46:22
Leilani Rios, 2:46:47
Nicole Esplin, 2:47:05
Starla Garcia, 2:47:08
Morgan Lingar, 2:47:15
Sara Ibbetson, 2:47:17
Jen Maranzano, 2:47:33
Lauren Coury, 2:47:35
Katie Layman, 2:47:46
Alison Sukolsky, 2:47:47
Sarah Kasabian-Larson, 2:47:55
Allison Grace Morgan, DEBUT
Andrea Masterson, DEBUT
Ashlee Powers, DEBUT
Chelsey Albertson, DEBUT
Cristina McKnight, DEBUT
Danielle Thiel, DEBUT
Emma Huston, DEBUT
Heather Bates, DEBUT
Ivette Mejia, DEBUT
Kaitlyn Peale, DEBUT
Katrina Spratford, DEBUT
Mackenzie Caldwell, DEBUT
Peyton Thomas, DEBUT
Savannah Berry, DEBUT
Shannon Porter, DEBUT
Stephanie Reich, DEBUT
Tara Welling, DEBUT
Weslie Pearce, DEBUT