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Friday, March 01, 2013

It's Jerusalem Marathon day!

The Jerusalem Marathon kicked off at 7:00 am on Friday, and by the time you read this, the lead runners should be finished despite the incredibly hilly course. Some 20,000 runners are here - which is about the same number as ran New York the first time I ran it in 1988. But in New York it was a Sunday so a lot more people came out to cheer.

As you might imagine, since there is school on Friday (the Education Ministry refused to cancel but most of the kids who study outside their own neighborhoods are staying home), the traffic in the city is a disaster and will be until around 1:00 pm.

More on the Marathon here, here and here. Here's the best story I found.
[Mayor Nir Barkat] also personally welcomed Miss Italy 1997 – Italian model, Paralympic athlete, politician and singer Annalisa Minetti, who is running the full marathon. She is blind and will run attached to her longtime running partner.

“Sport is the great therapy of life, and it’s an opportunity to demonstrate your abilities,” Minetti told The Jerusalem Post. She said she had chosen the Jerusalem marathon because of the spiritual connection to running in the Holy City.

“The whole time, I’ve been missing something spiritual in my athletics,” she said.

Minetti, who excels in short distances and won a bronze medal at the 2012 London Paralympics, remained undeterred by Jerusalem’s notorious hills.

“When you run in faith and love, nothing is impossible,” she said.

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