Because no one knows what the Olympic marathon course will look like in
"There's no question that a lot of turns both breaks your momentum and beats your legs up," said Craig Masback, a former elite middle-distance runner and now an NBC Sports analyst. "There wasn't a lot of talk about this before London, but there was a lot of talk afterward that the many turns on the London course definitely took its toll on people."
"I feel for every single person who's going to have to make it the last time, the last turn. I think people are going to wish that wasn't there. But I think the rest of the course is going to be fun. It's going to switch up the muscles for the athletes. If you overuse one type of muscle it can just lead to a lot of fatigue, but I think with all the turns it will keep people awake. I think for me, it excites me. It reminds me of some cross-country in there."
Masback's picks in the women's field are Flanagan, Desiree Linden and either
Among the men, he singled out
Prize money of $600,000 will be split among the top 10 finishers in the men's and women's fields. Each winner will get $80,000….
The average age of the trials entrants is 30.5 for the women and 28 for the men. The oldest were Colleen De Reuck, 51, and Kevin Castille, 43. The youngest were Alana Hadley, 19, and Arya Banreini, 22….
The Los Angeles Master Chorale will sing the national anthem before the start of Saturday's races.