One great aspect of living in New York City is being able to access to fantastic sporting events. Sure, there's that little baseball game that's been happening the past few weeks, but one event hit a bit closer to home (go Yankees!). This morning, we strolled a few blocks from our apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan to cheer on the elite men and women in the 2009 ING New York City Marathon. It's just incredible how after these athletes had endured more than 23 miles in five boroughs and sped past us at a clip that would leave any normal mortal winded after a city block.
Of course, we brought our camera. The photo above shows how close the race was, with marathon world-record holder and race favorite Paula Radcliffe leading by a hair (she eventually finished fourth due to a late injury). Eventual winner Derartu Tulu, the first Ethiopian woman to capture the top spot, is at the far right, with second place finisher Ludmila Petrova (in yellow) and third place finisher Christelle Daunay (in red). They were spaced about 2 seconds of each other in this shot, and that expanded to 38 seconds by the finish.
On the men's side, it was duel until near the end between American Meb Keflezighi (left) and Kenya’s Robert Cheruiyot. Meb, a native of Eritrea, ended up edging out Cheruiyot by 41 seconds with a time of 2 hours, 9.15 minutes.
Of course, any big event like this, with more than two million spectators, would be incomplete without a little politicking, so our current mayor Michael Bloomberg, who's up for reelection on Tuesday, preceded the women's pack in a car with police chief Ray Kelly.