New York recovers its marathon among the enthusiasm of thousands of runners

The men's podium, with the Kenyan Korir in the center.

The men’s podium, with the Kenyan Korir in the center.

After a two-year absence due to the pandemic, the New York Marathon this Sunday made the streets of the city vibrate at the trot of some 33,000 runners, who were encouraged by crowds in an atmosphere of celebration for the 50th anniversary of the first career.

“It was fantastic. All the way, while we were running, they were cheering us on. That was really good, I enjoyed it,” he said. the winner of the men’s category, the Kenyan Albert Korir, 27 years old, who took the thorn out of having finished second when he debuted in the competition prior to the covid-19.

In the race of women, the Kenyan Peres Jepchirchir, 28, also revalidated her title, champion and world record holder, who also scored the milestone of being the first to win an Olympic gold medal and win the next great marathon, two events separated by just three months.

Korir’s time was 2 hours, 8 minutes and 22 seconds, and Jepchirchir’s was 2:22:39.

The athletes, in a smaller group than in other years, like the non-professional runners, were the first to leave Staten Island, cross the famous Verrazano Bridge and travel 42 kilometers between the five districts of the Big Apple, flowing into Central Park.

With a cool and sunny autumn day that encouraged New Yorkers to leave their homes, the return of the sporting event evoked, according to its organizers, the spirit of improvement and desire to return to normalcy that was experienced immediately after the attacks of 11 of September.

And it is that, in a different way than the attacks, the year of the pandemic, which forced the cancellation of the contest, was devastating for the city, which for months had its streets unusually empty, saw numerous shops close forever and fired to some 34,000 deaths.

An image of the race, with the large skyscrapers in the background. REUTERS

For the American Molly Seidel, who came fourth, today’s “energy” was a testimony “that people have been able to come back after a very hard year“While third finalist Eyob Faniel from Italy was thrilled to see” Welcome to New York “posters.

The event was held a day before the US reopens its borders to tourism for the vaccinated, which has caused visa problems for some athletes who have suffered long trips to get there, and has influenced a participation figure of 40 % lower than in other years.

The pandemic has also led to changes in the organization of the event, with a greater distribution of runners in batches at the starting line that has led to the last ones to leave, at noon, doing it almost at the same time as the first to reach the finish line.

One of the participants, wearing the crown that evokes that of the Statue of Liberty. EFE

To mark the anniversary, the New York Road Runners group, responsible for the Marathon, has included in its “hall of fame” this year the most iconic runners of each decade, including Gary Muhrcke, the New York firefighter who was champion in the first race of 1970.

Muhrcke, who at 81 years old continues to run, was not present today, but another “promotion” partner among the fifty men who managed to finish that pioneering race, Larry Trachtenberg, who is 67 and the only one in sign up, according to local media.

Expecting the laggards to finish around 9:00 p.m. local time, the race ran until mid-afternoon without incident between the usual security measures, including several closed streets near Central Park in which many runners with a triumphal air were regaining their strength.


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