Khannouchis to split as couple, remain intact as coach and athlete

I wrote this press release with some sadness a few weeks back. But I will say that theirs is the friendliest divorce I’ve ever seen. I will have more coming on Khalid Khannouchi very soon.


December 6, 2010

New York, NY — American marathon record-holder Khalid Khannouchi and Sandra Khannouchi, his coach and manager of 16 years, have announced that they will be divorcing amicably later this year. The couple met at a road race in 1994 and a year later began working together as coach and runner. They married in 1996. The couple will continue their working alliance. Both are relocating from Ossining, NY to Colorado Springs, CO this month.

Ms. Khannouchi, who will keep her married name for professional reasons, coached Mr. Khannouchi to successes including four Chicago marathon titles, the standing American record at the 2002 London Marathon, and numerous course records at shorter distances.

“No one can coach me better than Sandra can,” said Mr. Khannouchi. “So it makes sense that if I want to finish out my career on a high note, she is the person I should work with to get there.”

Mr. Khannouchi, who placed fourth in the 2008 Olympic Marathon Trials, has been recovering and training through a series of surgeries to resolve a chronic injury issue. He expects to be racing again in the coming months.

5 Responses

  1. You did well. I don’t know them, but after reading that story Joe linked to it comes as a shock. At least amicable is better than acrimonious.

  2. I guess I don’t see this as _that_ sad. To my mind, the fact that a relationship ends doesn’t necessarily mean it was a failure. Sometimes people just grow together for a while, and then apart. “Until death do us part” came into vogue at a time when lives were much shorter in duration.

    A parting of the ways as amicable as this is a good thing, IMHO. It’s two people making a mutual decision that is best for them.

    • An observant reply, as always. My initial reaction was sadness because those two are quite a pair together. But that essential dynamic — what’s working — won’t change. The things that haven’t been working will simply go away.

  3. […] The Khannouchis Have Reportedly Split Up, But Will Work Together Khalid Khannouchi, a past winner of the Chicago and London Marathons, a former marathon world recordholder and the current American recordholder, is divorcing his wife Sandra, whom he married in 1996, but Sandra will continue in her long-time role as his coach. And both of them are relocating from Ossining, New York to Colorado Springs. "No one can coach me better than Sandra can," asserts Khannouchi. "So it makes sense that if I want to finish out my career on a high note, she is the person I should work with to get there."  Khannouchi has struggled with injuries in recent years but still hopes to return to world class status. (photo of Khalid Khannouchi by Victah Sailer) More […]

  4. It was wonderful working with the both of you in Arizona. I wish you both the best and hope to see Khalid on the roads soon.

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