Eritrean-American Meb Keflezighi, Ryan Hall to Lead Relay Teams for Dallas Mavericks, Texas Rangers

Meb Keflezighi (left) and Ryan Hall racing at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials.
Meb Keflezighi (left) and Ryan Hall racing at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials.

Eritrean Sport News: Meb Keflezighi and Ryan Hall will lead off five-person marathon relays for the Dallas Mavericks and Texas Rangers, respectively, on December 14, Dallas Marathon organizers announced yesterday.

Each of the teams for what’s being called the Behringer Relay will consist of one professional runner, three staff members, and one fan. The relay will run concurrently with the Dallas Marathon; relay legs will vary between 4.25 and 6.25 miles.

In a conversation with Runner’s World Newswire, race president Patrick Byerly spoke of the relay’s potential to bring running to a new audience.

“I think any time that you can cross promote and reach a different audience for being healthy and fit and running, I think it’s a good thing,” he said.

Each team will have a designated mile on the course where fans can cheer and may encounter some of the features they encounter at a baseball or basketball game—cheerleaders, mascots, and, potentially, though details have not yet been finalized, former or current players.

Byerly declined to make a prediction regarding who might win until he had more information about each team’s final lineup, but said, “Each of them is taking it very seriously. They want to win. They’re going around their office checking people’s times on Athlinks. They’re really trying to make sure they’re set up to run a fast time. It’s really exciting to see them so interested and engaged in it.”

The teams will compete for bragging rights and a donation to the winning team’s foundation.

Coincidentally, earlier this month, the first-ever NBA All-Star Relay took place at the New York City Marathon, with various NBA and WNBA personalities taking part.

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