Marathoners Seem Pretty Pleased With Houston For 2012 Olympic Trail

Earlier this week officials announced Houston would host the 2012 Olympic trials in January of that year, as athletes compete to get to the London games.

Houston was a finalist along with Boston and New York, home to two of the most famous marathons in the world.

Reaction is starting to trickle in from the athletes and coaches, and it looks like they're happy with the choice.

Runner's World has rounded up a bunch of comments; runners seem to like having the men's and women's races in the same city, and the January date (not possible in the other two cities, obviously):

Coach Greg McMillan: "I am, of course, very happy for our friends in Houston. They have long been a supporter of our group (McMillan Elite in Flagstaff, Arizona) and I truly believe that one of the best things to help U.S. distance running was moving the USA Half-Marathon Championships to Houston. Their flat, fast course and incredible hospitality helped our emerging elite runners run fast at the half-marathon which allowed them to believe they could run fast at the marathon. Houston has proven they know how to put on a first-class event and will do a great job with the Trials."

Brett Gotcher: "I think Houston will be a great place to host the men's and women's Marathon Trials in 2012. There's so much history there in the2009 Aramco Houston Half Marathon Houston, Texas January 18 half-marathon (the USA Championships in Houston), with Ryan Hall setting the American record and most U.S. runners setting their personal bests there. This will be a great opportunity for Houston to establish itself as one of the premiere marathons, and I have no doubt that they will come through for us.

"Personally, I have some great racing memories from Houston. From making the World Junior Cross Country team back in 2003 to my most recent breakthrough marathon a few months ago, Houston has always been a place where I feel comfortable and I look forward to carrying that with me into the 2012 Trials."

Dathan Ritzenhein: "Having had the pleasure of running the USA Half-Marathon Championships in Houston in 2009, I know the 2012 Olympic Trials will be a fantastic event. The organizers of the Houston Marathon do a fantastic job at providing a great venue and opportunity for elite athletes. The Houston course will be fast and the timing is great for full recovery before the Olympic Games. It also provides an ideal situation for an athlete like myself who hopes to have a full track season prior to the race. Most importantly, I believe having the Trials in Houston will allow us to send the best possible marathon teams to London in August."

One guy, though, said he would have liked to have made the team via a dramatic finish in Central Park. Mike Morgan said "I have always imagined getting to that last lap around Central Park and skullin' it just like Brian [Sell] and making the team. With that being said, I have some really good memories from the Houston Half-Marathon. In addition, they always put together a top-notch race, just like the NYRR. I am very excited to prepare myself for the next two years."

Click on the article for further reactions.

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Richard Connelly
Contact: Richard Connelly