2023 HOKA NAZ Elite Performance of the Year!! (Marathons)


Lauren’s race now joins the winners of the Women’s Track, Men’s Track, and Road Races/XC categories in our 2023 Performance of the Year Finals.




Alice Wright finishes 11th at the Osaka Marathon
Alice traveled all the way to Japan to run the prestigious Osaka Women’s Marathon in January. The race shuts down the city at noon for a female only, elite only marathon and its broadcast live on national tv and watched by millions. Pretty cool experience for Alice and she took advantage, running her second fastest-time ever despite windy conditions (2:29:50) to finish 11th place.

Futsum Zienasellassie runs 2:09:40 at Rotterdam
Having made his debut a few months earlier when he won the USATF Championships hosted by CIM in 2:11:05, Futsum traveled to The Netherlands in search of a big PB. He got what he came for–running 2:09:40 on the flat, fast Rotterdam course. It was the second-fastest time in team history and was good enough for an 11th-place finish in the deep field.

Aliphine Tuliamuk runs 2:24:37 in BostonAs the reigning Olympic Trials champion, there’s always a lot of eyeballs on Aliphine when she runs a marathon. And ever more so when that marathon is the Boston Marathon. On a great day for racing in April, Aliphine battled the deepest Boston women’s field ever and finished 11th place in a big PB of 2:24:37. It was our team’s second-fastest women’s marathon time ever.

Lauren Hagans wins the Grandma’s Marathon in her debut
Debut marathons are always a big deal. Lauren decided to make hers at Grandma’s–a race where her NAZ Elite teammate Kellyn Taylor owns the course record. Lauren ran patiently for much of the race, before eventually moving into the lead just past 20 miles–a lead she would not relinquish. Running nearly dead even splits of 1:12:58 and 1:12:57, her 2:25:55 was the fourth-fastest women’s U.S. debut marathon of all-time.

Wesley Kiptoo runs 2:10:28 at Chicago in his marathon debut
Wesley Kiptoo chose to make his marathon debut at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon in October–a much-anticipated debut after running a 1:00:35 half marathon in Houston earlier in the year. Wesley went out hard, coming through halfway in 2:06 pace, only to eventually drift back to a final time of 2:10:28. Still, a 12th-place finish at a World Marathon Major in 2:10 in your first go at the distance was darn impressive.

Kellyn Taylor finishes eighth in NYC in first marathon since 2021
One of America’s best and most consistent marathoners of the last decade, Kellyn gave birth to daughter Keagan in December of 2022 so came into the 2023 TCS NYC Marathon just seven months postpartum. She also hadn’t raced over 26.2 miles since November of 2021. With all that seemingly “against” her, she showed up and raced like typical Kellyn, leading for much of the way and eventually finishing eighth in 2:29:48. It was her fourth appearance at NYC and her fourth top-8 finish.

Futsum finishes top-10 at NYC
In his first ever World Marathon Major, Futsum performed admirably in New York, finishing as the Top American in 10th place overall. His 2:12:09 is a solid time on the famously difficult NYC layout and helped solidify him as one of the favorites for the 2024 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials.

Matt Baxter runs a big PB to finish fourth at CIM
After a shortened build-up due to a couple of small injuries, Matt went to CIM hoping to score a top-five finish at set a PB. Well…mission accomplished. Eighth at halfway, he moved his way through the field to finish fourth in 2:14:08–a three minute personal best.

Nick Hauger knocks out his OTQ at CIM
Nick made his debut at the 2021 CIM in 2:12:59 and appeared on his way to big things at the marathon distance. An injury-riddled 2022 and 2023 hampered those plans, however, and he was left needing a sub 2:18:00 at the 2023 CIM to qualify for the 2024 Olympic Trials. He went out very conservatively, and ran a smooth 2:16:02, despite that pressure–a time that should allow him to recover quickly and prepare for the Trials in February.



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