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NEW YORK, NY NOVEMBER 02: A runner runs past equipment that was to be used for the New York City Marathon is seen near Central Park November 2,
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He was out $250 for the race fee and $300 for the flight,
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"This race is a very special one for me and millions of people around the world,
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As for the amateur runners, Nikki Davies of London arrived Friday looking forward to the race.
"I can understand not wanting to run through devastated parts of the city," she said. "I thought if they cancel it, they’d cancel it earlier."
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The marathon usually is a civic celebration. Not just for elite runners,
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In buildings along the route, there are untold numbers of parties, ranging from catered feasts to grilled burgers.
Thousands lined Central Park as Geoffrey Mutai of Kenya set a course record last year in 2 hours, 5 minutes, 6 seconds. By the time last place finisher Mouldi Fehri of France was nearing the end in 9:31:43, traffic had reopened on Central Park South and people hardly took notice. This year,
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"I’m more concerned about the people in Staten Island," Martinez said.
People from all over the globe come to New York for the race,
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Some runners at the New Yorker Hotel in midtown just above the blackout zone caused by the superstorm were in the lobby crying when they learned the race was off. One person was curled up on a couch,
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"We spend a year on this," said Gisela Clausen of Munich. "We don’t eat what we want. We don’t drink what we want. And we’re on the streets for hours. We live for this marathon,
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Linda Corbitt of San Francisco was walking to the Javits Center with her daughter when she heard the race was scrapped. Corbitt has leukemia and her daughter planned to run to raise money for a cure,
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"I’m sad for the people who trained so hard for many, many months but we understand why the decision was made," Corbitt said. Mayor Bloomberg announced this evening that the marathon was cancelled. Limited public transit has returned to New York.