The 49th TCS New York City Marathon took place this past weekend on November 3rd. Joyciline Jepkosgei, of Kenya, won the women’s marathon with a time of 2:22:38. Geoffrey Kamworor, also of Kenya, won the men’s marathon with a time of 2:08:13. This was Jepkosgei’s first win and Kamworor’s second win.
In her NYC Marathon debut, Jepkosgei finished with the second-fastest time ever in the women’s open division. She finished nearly a minute before four-time gold medal winner Mary Keitany.
“My strategy I had planned was to finish the race strong,” Jepkosgei said. “But in the last kilometers, I saw that I was approaching the finish line and I was capable of winning.”
The marathon saw a record number of finishers. 53,508 (30,794 men/22,714 women) runners finished the marathon, beating the 2018 record of 52,812 finishers.
Project Purple had a total of 91 runners participate in the NYC Marathon. A total of $427,000 has been raised so far to help defeat pancreatic cancer.
For several Project Purple runners, this was their first time running the NYC Marathon. Shaun Rose ran for his friend Rolan “Rock” Shnayder who passed away from pancreatic cancer earlier this year. He said there were tough moments, but the energy from the crowd lifted him up and kept him going.
“In a time when there seems to be so much negativity in the country and world, the NYC Marathon is maybe the best example of everything that is right about humankind,” Rose said. “Millions line the street to cheer for and support tens of thousands of people they have never met. Thousands run for a cause, a purpose. Every single step along the way, I experienced nothing but kindness and generosity.”
The Project Purple cheer zones motivated multiple runners, including Kristie Hall and Thomas Cain, to continue running. The support from the Project Purple family energized the runners to cross the finish line.
“I knew it was going to be a special event, and being with Project Purple brought every emotion to the surface,” Hall said. “From the dinner the night before, to the cheer zones, and running with people in a ‘family,’ I knew this is the year I was meant to run.”
“What made the marathon special for me was the cheer zones,” Cain said. “You go through a lot of emotions; excitement, dread, fear, doubt. At those moments of doubt, the Project Purple cheer zones energized me and helped me cross the finish line.”
Another key motivator for runners was being able to see their loved ones at the race cheering them on. Nicole Clark was grateful for the opportunity to run the NYC Marathon, especially in front of her dad.
“It is hard to put into words exactly what that day meant to me. It was an honor to be accepted with Project Purple and an honor to be a part of the marathon,” she said. “It was a long 26.2 miles, but I ran for my Dad and was able to see him when I had about a mile and a quarter left, and that was everything. I will remember that day for the rest of my life.”
Gina Alvarez describes her day in New York as “pure magic from beginning to end.” Not only did she have a successful race, she used her time to connect with her Project Purple friends and meeting new friends.
“Running the NYC Marathon is truly a privilege but when you pair that with running this race with Project Purple, it turns into one of the most unforgettable experiences I’ll ever have,” she said. “I will never forget how amazing and exciting it was to see the Project Purple crew cheering their hearts out for the runners.”
Rebecca Dvorin says that although the marathon challenged her mentally, physically, and emotionally, it reminded her that it’s for a great cause, and by running, she’s raising awareness for Project Purple and pancreatic cancer.
“Running the marathon for Project Purple is a reminder that it is so much more than just a road race: it is an event that helps to bring awareness and fundraising to many charities, including Project Purple,” she said. “I’ve enjoyed every moment getting to know the amazing people from Project Purple and am excited to continue to be a part of this organization!”
The New York City Marathon was a successful race for Project Purple and its runners. Not only did Project Purple raise hundreds of thousands of dollars that will go towards fighting pancreatic cancer, but the experience is one that the runners will never forget.