American Teams Announced for 2024 BOLDERBoulder International Pro Team Challenge

BOLDERBoulder, America’s All-Time Best 10K, announced the rosters of the American teams that will compete in the 2024 International Pro Team Challenge on Memorial Day – May 27th. The International Team Challenge, which was created in 1998, includes professional runners from around the world competing on three-person teams; in a team-by-country format. The prize purse for this year’s International Team Challenge is valued at $83,700 before performance bonuses. Last year $111,850 in prize money and bonuses were awarded.

In the men’s race, two teams will represent Team USA – Team USA Red and Team USA White.

The Team USA Red roster will feature the top three finishers from February’s U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials – Conner Mantz (Provo, UT), Clayton Young (Springville, UT), and Leonard Korir (Colorado Springs, CO). Both Mantz and Young have been named to the Paris Olympic team while Korir is expected to be named in early May. Mantz returns as the defending BOLDERBoulder champion following his epic come-from-behind win at last year’s race. Young and Korir also return this year following 11th and 8th place finishes, respectively, at last year’s race. Korir will be competing in his fifth BB10K having won the race in 2022. In 2017 he was second finishing less than one second behind winner Geay Gabriel. Their marathon career bests are – Mantz (2:07:47; #4 U.S. all-time), Young (2:08:00; #7 U.S. all-time), and Korir (2:07:56; #6 U.S. all-time)

“Having the three men that will represent our country in the marathon at this summer’s Paris Olympic Games is something we are extremely proud of,” said BOLDERBoulder Race Director Cliff Bosley. “All three ran here last year and to have them back is just incredible for the race, the city of Boulder and, the sport of running.”

The Team USA White men’s roster will feature Jared Ward (Mapleton, Utah), Futsum Zienasellassie (Flagstaff, Arizona), and Sam Chelanga (Colorado Springs, CO). Ward, a 2016 Olympian, will compete in the BB10K for the sixth time since 2015. In 2022 he finished fourth; his best finish. Zienasellassie, the 2022 USATF Marathon Champion, will be competing in his second BB10K (2019, 18th place). Zienasellassie owns a marathon personal best of 2:09:40. Chelanga finished seventh at last year’s race and in 2017 finished third. At the 2023 Chicago Marathon, he ran a career-best 2:08:50 (#9 U.S. all-time).

Like the men, there will be two Team USA women’s teams.

Defending champion Emily Durgin (Flagstaff, AZ) will headline the Team USA Red roster. Durgin’s teammates will be Boulder’s very own Nell Rojas and Sara Hall (Flagstaff, AZ). Durgin finished ninth at the Olympic Marathon Trials in February and recently won the USATF 10 Mile national title, her first national title. At last year’s BB10K, she stormed to victory, winning 24 seconds over Daisy Kimeli. “I can’t wait to be back in Boulder for the best day of the year,” stated Durgin. “Competing as teammates with Nell and Sara will make the experience even better.” Rojas, a native Boulderidian, is no stranger to the BB10K. At last year’s race, she and her father Ric, the winner of the inaugural race in 1979, served as the honorary starters for the race. In 2019, forty years after her father’s win, she won the citizen’s race here. Hall, 42, returns to Boulder after a 10-year hiatus. In 2014 she finished 16th. At the Olympic Trials in February, she finished fifth running 2:26:06; a U.S. masters record. She owns a career-best of 2:20:32 in the marathon (#5 U.S. all-time).

The Team USA White roster will be comprised of an all-University of Colorado alum squad – Makena Morley (Flagstaff, AZ), Sara Vaughn (Boulder), and Carrie Verdon (Boulder). “Being on an all-CU team is so cool,” stated Vaughn. “I hope we can make all of Buff Nation proud of us.” Morley, a 2020 CU graduate, will be making her BB10K debut. Vaughn, a 2008 CU grad, will be competing in her second BB10K. In 2022 she finished ninth. Her marathon career best is 2:23:24 (#13 U.S. all-time). Verdon, a 2017 CU grad, will be competing in her second BB10K, having finished third here last year.

The women’s race will start at 11:15 AM and the men’s race will begin at 11:26 AM. The start line is at the corner of Folsom and Taft Streets near the northeast corner of Folsom Field. A crowd estimated at over 40,000 spectators will witness the finish on the stadium floor of CU’s Folsom Field, and the always impactful Memorial Day Tribute will follow it.