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Kenyan Peres Jepchirchir makes history with NYC Marathon win

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A Kenyan woman took the 50th annual New York City Marathon title on Sunday.

Peres Jepchirchir, 28, won the marathon with a finish time of 2:22:39 and snagged the $100,000 first-place prize.

She made history as the first Olympic Marathon champion to win the race.

Jepchirchir finished just four seconds ahead of Viola Cheptoo, also of Kenya.

Around 30,000 athletes from across the globe gathered at the starting line at the Verrazzano Bridge in Staten Island for the return of the iconic, 26.2-mile race.

The Big Apple marathon — which is the world’s largest and typically draws about 50,000 runners — had been canceled last year over COVID-19 safety concerns.

“It really feels like we’re coming back as a city when we have this New York City Marathon,” MTA acting president and race sponsor Craig Cipriano said at a press conference last week.

Organizers required this year’s athletes to be vaccinated or provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 48 hours of the race.

The in-person New York City marathon was canceled in 2020 due to the widespread COVID-19 pandemic however a virtual "race" was held in its place.
The in-person New York City marathon was canceled in 2020 due to the widespread COVID-19 pandemic however a virtual “race” was held in its place.
KEVIN C DOWNS
Organizers required this year's athletes to be vaccinated or provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test. Organizers also managed to modify the beginning of the race to allow for more social distancing.
Organizers required this year’s athletes to be vaccinated or provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test. Organizers also managed to modify the beginning of the race to allow for more social distancing.
KEVIN C DOWNS

The starting format was also modified by adding a fifth wave to allow for more social distancing as runners are bussed and ferried to the starting line.

Runners begin in Staten Island, then zigzag north through Brooklyn and Queens before heading west across the Queensboro Bridge into Manhattan and the Bronx, then winding their way down into Central Park to cross the finish line.

“When you run a marathon, you feel there is nothing that you can not do,” said Surya Kant, chairman of the tech firm Tata Consultancy Services North America, which is sponsoring the race.

“With every step you take, you build on that belief. This Sunday, it is not that we are just celebrating the return of the marathon, and the 50th year of the running, but we are also celebrating the power of belief,” he said.

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