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2019 Ascension Seton Austin Marathon Set for Epic Race Day

The stage is set for Sunday, Feb. 17th, to be an epic race day

High Five Events is putting the final touches on what will be another memorable Ascension Seton Austin Marathon presented by Under Armour®. The world-class event has many highlights, including a 2:45 pace group for female elites to hit the Olympic Marathon Trials B standard, Lance Armstrong as the Austin Gives Miles Charity Chaser, a highly-competitive elite field, and the return of the FloSports livestream. Nearly 16,000 runners from all 50 states and 35 countries will run the 28th annual Austin Marathon on Sunday, Feb. 17th.

“Austin has such an amazing fitness community and we have a marathon that reflects that,” said Will Nation, member of the 2:45 pace group and 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier. “It’s my hope that I can assist talented individuals in achieving their goal of hitting an OTQ and demonstrate that the Austin Marathon is a race where you can do just that.”

The 2019 course is the same as when the Austin Marathon unveiled their new course in 2018. The course is designed to provide a better participant and spectator experience and allow enhanced traffic flow along the course, while still finishing with the picturesque Texas State Capitol as every runner’s backdrop. Race-day highlights include nuun performance at every aid station, two Gatorade nutrition stations, live music on course, athlete tracking, the infamous and energetic RunLab Bridge at Mile 7, and much more.

FloSports, a sports media based in Austin, Texas, will highlight the Austin Marathon and Half Marathon’s Elite Athlete Program by following the men’s and women’s elite leaders throughout the race. They will also have a camera capturing finishers as they cross the finish line. The 3-block-long finish line festival features the Under Armour recovery zone, the Oskar Blues Austin beer garden, live music, and several local food trucks. Austin’s own, Delivery Service, will rock two post-race sets. The two-day Austin Marathon expo will take place on Friday, Feb. 15th, and Saturday, Feb. 16th.

“Unveiling the new Austin Marathon course last year generated a lot of positive buzz, showcased Austin to runners from around the world, and propelled us to new heights in 2019,” said Stacy Keese, co-owner of High Five Events. “Working with amazing sponsors like Ascension Seton and Under Armour has allowed us to further enhance our customer’s experience, making race day one they’ll talk about for some time.”

The following is a sample of the athletes in the Elite Field competing for the $20,000 prize purse: Joey Whelan (2020 Olympic Marathon Trials Qualifier), Anita Perez (2x Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier), Jameson Mora (2x Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier), Patrick Rizzo (4x Olympic Trials Marathon qualifier), Heather Lieberg (2020 Olympic Trials Marathon qualifier), Jocelyn Todd (2020 Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier), Ryan Miller (2x Olympic Trials Marathon qualifier), Samantha Calderon (2020 Olympic Trials Marathon Qualifier).

The Austin Marathon will celebrate its 28th year running in the capital of Texas in 2019. Austin’s flagship running event annually attracts runners from all 50 states and 30+ countries around the world. Having start and finish locations in the heart of downtown Austin puts participants and spectators near all the action and within walking distance of restaurants, hotels, and shops. Finishing with the picturesque Texas State Capitol as your backdrop is icing on the cake for the perfect running weekend destination. Registration is open for all distances.

Austin Marathon Announces Fourth Round of Elite Runners

Fourth round of elite runners will compete during race weekend for a prize purse that totals $26,000

High Five Events is excited to announce the fourth round of accepted athletes for the 2019 Ascension Seton Austin Marathon presented by Under Armour®. Returning for its third year in a row, this opportunity creates a competitive field of elite male and female runners while discovering emerging talent, pushing the entire talent pool to reach Olympic standards. FloTrack’s live coverage highlights the competition amongst the elites, following male and female marathoners and half marathoners.

“I’m excited to return to Austin and compete for the win,” said Joey Whelan, whose 2018 Austin Marathon victory launched an extremely successful running year, including qualifying for the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials. “This is the best time of year to train for a marathon in Texas. I’m looking forward to putting in the hard long runs and testing myself against the 2019 elite field.”

The fourth round of 2019 marathoners include:

  • Joey Whelan – male Elite Athlete Program (7th place 2018 Grandma’s Marathon – 2:16:28)
  • Nick Edinger – male Elite Athlete Program (8th place 2018 Pittsburgh Marathon – 2:18:32)
  • Patrick Geoghegan – male Elite Athlete Program (1:06:04 at 2018 Monumental Half Marathon)
  • Blair Teal – male Elite Athlete Program (2018 Outer Banks Marathon champion – 2:22:30)
  • Hyvon Ngetich – female Elite Field (3rd place 2015 Austin Marathon – 3:04:02)

The fourth round of 2019 half marathoners include:

  • Guor Maker – male Elite Athlete Program (2016 Olympics [South Sudan] – 2:22:45)
  • Andrew Leahey – male Elite Field (3rd place 2018 Oklahoma City Half Marathon – 1:13:46)
  • Natasha van der Merwe – female Elite Field (2017 Decker Challenge female champ – 1:26:27)
  • JR Creekmore – male Elite Field (2018 Jonas Cattell Memorial 10 mile champ – 53:42, half marathon debut)
  • Ericka Mason – female Elite Field (3rd place 2018 Cowtown Half Marathon – 1:23:40)
  • Todd Mickey – male Elite Field (2x individual All-Big 12 [indoor mile and 1000m], half marathon debut)
  • Ann Lokiles – female Elite Field (2x Ohio Valley XC Champion (2015 – 2016), half marathon debut)

The prize purse breakdown follows: $15,000 for the marathon, $5,000 for the half marathon, and $6,000 for the Manzano Mile presented by Dole. Runners not accepted into the Elite Athlete Program are still invited to run in the Elite Field.  Read about the first, second, and third round of accepted elite runners. The fifth round of athletes will be announced soon. Applications are still being accepted and elite marathoners can apply on the Austin Marathon’s website. Athletes that meet the program’s standards and are accepted will be given one comp entry to the 2019 Austin Marathon or half marathon, reimbursement eligibility, and standards bonuses.

Austin Marathon Opens Elite Athlete Program Application

Elite athlete program continues to grow

The 2019 Austin Marathon® presented by Under Armour® is accepting applications for the Elite Athlete Program from elite runners.The Elite Athlete Program creates a competitive field of elite male + female runners while discovering emerging talent. This pushes the entire talent pool closer to Olympic standards.Elites will compete for $26K during the #AustinMarathon, #AustinHalfMarathon, and #ManzanoMile pres. by @dolesunshine. Click To Tweet

Joey Whelan was accepted to the 2018 Austin Marathon Elite Athlete Program.

All smiles for Joey Whelan as he accepts his check.

“As a Texas resident, competing in and winning the 2018 Austin Marathon in my own backyard was a tremendous confidence boost, inspiring me to train harder and set higher goals for my running career,” said Joey Whelan. “I have since qualified for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials and am looking forward to returning to the streets of Austin in 2019 to continue the positive momentum created here in 2018.”

Runners accepted to the 2019 Austin Marathon/Half Marathon Elite Athlete Program will compete for a $20,000 prize purse. The Austin Marathon prize purse will total $15,000 and award the top five male and female finishers. The Austin Half Marathon purse will total $5,000 and award the top three male and female finishers. An additional $6,000 is up for grabs for elite milers in the Manzano Mile presented by Dole®. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until December 31, 2018.

Headed in the right direction

“Rebuilding the Elite Athlete Program has taken a great amount of time, vision, and dedication, but it makes it worth it to witness an amazing human and talented athlete like Allison Macsas qualify for the Olympic Marathon Trials on our brand new marathon course,” said Jack Murray, co-owner of High Five Events.” “Having other elites, like our champ Joey (Whelan) and Jocelyn Todd (3rd place female, half marathon) set PRs, gain confidence, and eventually run an Olympic Trials Qualifying time indicates our program is headed in the right direction.”

Patrick Smyth ran with the 2018 Austin Half Marathon Elite Athlete Program.

Patrick Smyth misses the half marathon OTQ B standard by 16 seconds.

Joey Whelan (2:21:37) and Austinite Allison Macsas (2:43:11) both won the 2018 Austin Marathon. Macsas won her second Austin Marathon title in a row and qualified for the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials. Patrick Smyth (1:04:16) and Hillary Montgomery (1:16:15) won the Austin Half Marathon. Smyth barely missed out on an Olympic Trial Qualifying time. Review last year’s marathon and half marathon times.

Athletes accepted into the Elite Athlete Program must meet the program’s standards. Those that meet standards will receive a comped entry, standards bonuses, comped entry to the 3M Half Marathon, and be eligible for hotel and transportation reimbursement up to $350. Runners could still be accepted into the Elite Field if their times fall within a 10-15 minute window of Program standards. They would receive a comped entry only.

To be eligible for reimbursement athletes must be accepted into the Elite Athlete Program and start the race. All athletes are subject to random drug testing pre- and post-race. Read more about program details, including eligibility standards, here. Interested athletes with questions can contact elites@youraustinmarathon.com.