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November 4, 2016

Joyce Chepkirui

New York, New York

Q. How do you feel fitness-wise right now?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I think good. For sure I've prepared very well. I think anything can happen.

Q. Were you happy with your result in Boston in April when you were third?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Yes, I was very, very happy.

Q. And what's your goal on Sunday?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: For now, I am not going to say anything. It will depend on the weather.

Q. Do you view Mary Keitany, do you think she's the one to beat?

Q. Where have you been training?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I'm training in Eaton, Kenya.

Q. Who else is in your group?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: We don't have a big group.

Q. Mostly pacemakers?

Q. Do you have a time in mind for Sunday?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I don't -- it depends on the weather.

Q. You said you had a blister during the Great North Run. How did you feel during that race?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Yes, I was having a problem, but for now, I'm okay.

Q. How do you feel your fitness compares to last year when you won Amsterdam, won Honolulu? Do you think you're in better shape?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: For now, this is my fastest year this year.

Q. Better shape this year?

Q. Best shape ever. You haven't run New York before, have you?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: This is my first time running marathon, but I've run half marathon two times.

Q. I remember you were very close to Molly Huddle in the half marathon this year, and you're racing her on Sunday. Do you have any thoughts on that?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: You know, marathon and half marathon, there is a big difference.

Q. Do you have any hard feelings? She sort of cut you off a little bit at the end. Were you mad about that?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I don't remember very well.

Q. Was there a problem with the end of the race or you don't care?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: No, I don't care. That's what I'm saying, half marathon and marathon is very different.

Q. You're facing Mary Keitany. What do you think it will take to defeat her?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: You know, this is my first time to compete with her in marathon, but I think everything is going to be okay.

Q. You're confident in your training?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Yeah, I'm very, very confident.

Q. Have you done anything -- New York is hilly. There's bridges. Have you done anything to prepare for the New York course?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I change a little bit.

Q. How did you change?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I normally train on some hills.

Q. But not this time? More flat this time or more hills?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: More hills this time.

Q. You've had great success here in the half marathon. What is it about New York that helps you do so well? What is it about the city, New York, that you race so well? Is there anything special about it?
DAVOR SAVIJA: What is it you like about New York the most? Because you run well in New York. What's making you run good in New York?

JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I like the people and the cheering.

Q. So that helps?

Q. Have you done any racing since the Boston Marathon?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Yes, I have done a half marathon.

Q. When was that?
DAVOR SAVIJA: She did a half marathon in Czech Republic in July. It was 30 degrees Centigrade at the start. So she was cold.

JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Yeah, it was cold.

DAVOR SAVIJA: And she ran the Great North Run in September.

JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: No, I was starting.

DAVOR SAVIJA: Sorry. 13 something. Great North Run was in September in Newcastle.

Q. You were a lot better in Boston this year than you were last year. Why was that?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I increase my training.

Q. So more miles?

Q. From what to what? What were you doing before?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I was training on a flat course, and I knew there was up and down. So I increased the training.

Q. Did you increase your kilometers per week?

Q. That was the same. How much do you run usually?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I think per week like 200 kilometers.

DAVOR SAVIJA: In the peak weeks. 160 to 180 the other weeks.

Q. Is anyone in your training group in the professional field here?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: No. It's me alone and my pacemakers.

DAVOR SAVIJA: She has four pacemakers, four guys who are trying to survive.

Q. Are they here?

Q. So she set pace at home?

Q. Do you have a coach?

Q. Since when?
DAVOR SAVIJA: Joyce is self coached.

JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Since when I start to run.

Q. Really? How many years ago?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I think six years now, yeah.

Q. Do you enjoy that, or do you wish you had more people?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I enjoy that.

Q. What's the best part? Of training alone and coaching yourself?
DAVOR SAVIJA: Why do you prefer training alone versus the other ladies? What's the big deal about running alone?

JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Me, I like to train alone with my pacemakers. Yeah, I like that.

Q. Tell me about your background. Do you have any brothers or sisters? Are you married with children?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: In my family, I'm the first girl, and we are six. We have three brothers and two sisters.

Q. And you're the oldest?

Q. Do the others run?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Yes, but they are still in school.

Q. Okay, so they're that young?

Q. Where did you grow up? Are you originally from Eaton?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: No. I grew up in Bomet.

Q. In the mountains or flat?
DAVOR SAVIJA: It is hilly, and it's not that close to Eaton. It's two or three hours. It's halfway from Nairobi.

Q. What did Geoffrey Mutai tell you about New York? Did he give you any tips?

Q. What did you talk to Geoffrey about?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I asked about the course, and he was the one to give me a program for this race.

Q. Was there any point in particular he told you about? On the course in particular he told you about?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Yeah, he was telling me, I think, the first one mile is very tough and 25 kilometer.

Q. What about 25 kilometers?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: Very tough again.

DAVOR SAVIJA: Geoffrey Mutai is her first cousin.

JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: It's my cousin.

Q. He gave you a training program?

Q. Has he ever given you a training program for other races?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: No, only for this.

Q. Joyce, since this is your debut here at New York City Marathon, how does it feel to be here?
JOYCE CHEPKIRUI: I'm very happy. The race, yeah, in New York City for the first time in marathon. But really I have run in New York City two times half marathon and two times 10K . So I'm very happy to race here.

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