Quick Thoughts on 2024 Olympic Trials Marathon Standards

So what do I think about the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon qualifying standards? I’ve gotten this question at least a dozen times in the past few days and here’s where I’ve landed: I personally believe the women’s field at the 2020 Trials in Atlanta was way too big (511 athletes) while the men’s was just about right (260), so the existing standards needed to be evaluated and adjusted accordingly. The main purpose of having an Olympic Trials race is to choose the Olympic team; the secondary purposes are to create opportunity and experience for up-and-coming athletes and, as Sarah Lorge Butler wrote in the aforelinked piece for Runner’s World, "to connect elite running with a broad audience.”