New Zealand runner Jake Robertson has announced he will join defending champion Philemon Rono and Canadian Reid Coolseat at this year’s Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon on October 21st.
— Jake Robertson (@Jakehtbz) August 8, 2018
Robertson, 28, is having a fantastic year, debuting in the marathon on March 4 at the Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon in Japan, where he finished in third place while setting a New Zealand national record with a time of 2:08:26. He has also won three prominent U.S. road races including the Houston Half-Marathon in January (where we ran 60:01), the Crescent City 10K in New Orleans and most recently, the Beach to Beacon 10K in Cape Elizabeth, Maine where he ran 27:37.
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It was partly due to Robertson’s domination of the Beach to Beacon 10K that a thread has emerged on Twitter criticizing the race for not having drug testing. Robertson finished in 27:37, the third-fastest time in the race’s 20-year history. (The race was founded by 1984 Olympic marathon winner Joan Benoit Samuelson, a native of Cape Elizabeth.)
Per this Portland Press-Herald article, Saturday's Beach to Beacon 10K didn't have drug testing this year and hasn't had it for "3 or 4 years."
Considering the fields B2B brings in every year, there needs to be testing. No excuses.https://t.co/eApebTBTGU
— Jonathan Gault (@jgault13) August 7, 2018
Robertson famously proposed to his girlfriend, Magdalyne Masai, at the finish line of last year’s Great North Run, the world’s largest half-marathon, which takes place in the U.K. every September. Robertson finished second behind Mo Farah, and Masai finished fourth in the women’s race.
Robertson, along with his twin brother Zane and his fiancée Masai, has been living and training in the town of Iten, in Kenya’s Great Rift Valley, for about 12 years.
He has expressed the desire and intention to not only win STWM, but to challenge Rono’s course record of 2:06:51, set at last year’s race.
“Jake is an outstanding addition to this year’s race,” says race director Alan Brookes. “His remarkable story of triumph over adversity in life, and determination to attain the highest levels of success in athletics against seemingly insurmountable odds, have shown what he’s made of.”