On a crisp Sunday morning, The 41st ING New York City Marathon drew thousands of runners from all walks of life. They were prominent world athletes, unsung heroes, and every day people.
Among the runners included Chilean miner Edison Pena and the current world record holder Haile Gebrselassie.
Less than a month after surviving 69 days stuck in a mine, Chilean miner Edison Pena completed the marathon in five hours.
Haile, the clear favorite among the contenders, held steady until he reached the 16th mile. As hard as the decision must have been, he could no longer continue to race with his injured knee.
Haile started experiencing problems with his right knee two weeks prior to the competition leading to an MRI just a day before the marathon which revealed tendinitis and water in his knees.
Ethiopia’s Gebre Gebremariam finished first in his ING New York City marathon debut.
During a press conference, Haile fought back tears as he announced his retirement, shocking everyone.
Haile is wildly considered the greatest long distance runner of all time. He has competed across the globe setting and breaking world records and was looking forward to competing in the ING marathon.
Earlier this week at a press conference Haile noted, “If you run a marathon, how can you stop running without running in New York? It’s not the one [where] you run a fast time, it’s the one you run to win.”
After the race Gebre- who did not expect to win- recalled how Haile was struggling to stay in the competition before finally telling him to “catch them.” Haile’s words gave Gebre that extra push he needed to win.
Images by Yolkworks for TsehaiNY