Gelana’s national record of 2:18:58 from the 2012 Rotterdam Marathon makes her the fastest in the women’s elite field and, whether coincidentally or not, has always run well in the Netherlands, setting several personal bests over shorter distances in Dutch road races.
She also won the Amsterdam Marathon back in 2011, setting what was then a personal best and course record of 2:22:08, so Gelana has some familiarity with the race itself and knows fast times can emerge if there are favorable weather conditions.
Two places behind Gelana in the Japanese capital at the start of this year was Kenya’s 2014 Commonwealth Games winner Filomena Cheyech, and the latter will also be on the start line in Amsterdam.
Cheyech has a best of 2:22:44, set when winning the Paris Marathon last year.
Another Kenyan added to the Amsterdam women’s field is African 10,000m champion Joyce Chepkirui.
Despite her credentials on the track, Chepkirui has yet to really impress at the marathon and her best stands at a relatively modest 2:29:07, when finishing 10th in Boston this year.
However, she won the high quality Dam tot Dam 10 mile road race in and around Amsterdam last month, running a personal best of 51:30, and this suggest she might be ready to make a big improvement over the marathon distance.
Phil Minshull and organizers for the IAAF
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