Found on RunnersWorld.com and written by Liam Boylan-Pett
The best American marathoners toe the line on Saturday in Los Angeles with spots for the summer games in Rio at stake.
On Saturday, February 13, the best distance runners in the U.S. will race 26.2 miles through Los Angeles in the 2016 Olympic Marathon Trials. The top three women and men in each race will represent the U.S. in Rio in August. For the first time in the history of the event, viewers can watch the races unfold live on television on NBC starting at 1 p.m. ET.
The coverage will jump right into the action—the men’s race begins at 1:06 p.m. and the women’s will start 16 minutes later.
Viewers unable to be in front of a TV have the option of catching the race live on a computer with NBC’s streaming service, Live Extra. On mobile devices, viewers will need to download NBC’s Live Extra app. (You will need to verify a television provider by entering a username and password based on your cable provider in order to watch online.)
All three women who made the 2012 Olympic Team—Shalane Flanagan, Desiree Linden, and Kara Goucher—are back. Flanagan and Linden seem like locks to make the team as long as they’re healthy. Goucher will have to beat veterans Amy Cragg, who was fourth in 2012, and Deena Kastor, the 2004 Olympic bronze medalist who will be 42 on race day. For Kastor, it would be her fourth Olympic team.
In the men’s race, Meb Keflezighi is back to defend his title at the trials. He went on to take fourth in the London Olympics. He’ll be 40 on the day of the race, but the 2014 Boston Marathon champion and 2004 Olympic silver medalist knows how to handle the pressure of big moments. Ryan Hall and Abdi Abdirahman joined Keflezighi in London in 2012, but neither will be racing in Los Angeles on Sunday. Hall, the fastest American marathoner of all time, retired from the sport earlier in January and Abdirahman suffered a left-calf injury.
Dathan Ritzenhien, who was fourth at the 2012 trials, is among the favorites to make the team. He’ll face challenges from up-and-comers Luke Puskedra, Jared Ward, and Sam Chelanga.
Adding intrigue to the race is Galen Rupp, the 2012 silver medalist in the 10,000 meters in London, who is making his debut at the distance. Rupp has never raced farther than a half-marathon. He qualified for the trials race with a 1:01:20 in December but has the credentials of a world-class marathoner.
Here’s how to watch:
When: Saturday, February 13, 1 p.m. ET. The men’s race begins at 1:06 p.m. and the women go off at 1:22.
TV: NBC Sports
Streaming: NBC Sports – Live Extra
Mobile: NBC’s Live Extra app