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Photos: Record-Setting Marine Corps Marathon

Arlington hosted the 37th Marine Corps Marathon on Sunday, bringing tens of thousands of runners and spectators to the county.

The race kicked off just before 8:00 a.m. on Route 110, just before Memorial Bridge, and wound its way through Rosslyn, up Lee Highway, down the Spout Run Parkway, into the District (for about 16 of the 26.2 miles), through Crystal City and back to the Iwo Jima Memorial. A record 23,515 runners finished the race.

Photos from the race, below and above, were taken by ARLnow.com and by Flickr pool contributors Christaki, Sarahalow and Wolfkann. A press release with information on the top finishers and other details, after the jump.

The post-race press release from the Marine Corps Marathon:

Largest Marine Corps Marathon Hosts 23,515 Finishers

ARLINGTON, VA (Oct. 28, 2012) – In the largest participation in the event’s 37 year history, the Marine Corps Marathon (MCM) welcomed 1,568 more participants then in any previous year when 23,515 runners from every state and 54 countries crossed the finish line at the Marine Corps War Memorial. U.S. Army elite runners led the pack taking the top two spots as well as the Armed Forces Team Championship.

On a 52-degree morning with the threat of Hurricane Sandy on the horizon, U.S. Marine Reservist Lieutenant Colonel and comedian Rob Riggle fired the starting pistol in tandem with the boom of the Howtizer sending more runners across the start line than any other time in the event’s history. Army runners took first and second place overall.

“I’m proud to run with the U.S. Forces, it’s really exciting, I feel like I really accomplished something,” said Augustus Maiyo, who placed first finishing in 2:20:20. Maiyo is a U.S. Army specialist from Colorado Springs, CO, and a native of Kenya. His teammate, Army Capt. Kenneth Foster, also of Colorado Springs completed his 2nd place MCM run in 2:22:39.

Running his second MCM in four years, Foster admitted, “The conditions were ideal aside from the wind. The temperature was great and the crowd support was great, plus you’re running in the nation’s capital with all four military branches here, so it’s pretty significant,” he said.

Both runners received gold and silver wreaths from the Ambassador of Greece after completing their marathon wins. Joining them at the podium was Birhanu Tadesse, of Silver Spring, MD, and a native of Ethiopia who took third place finishing in 2:23:03.

Ethiopian runners also led the charge for the women with Hirut Beyene Guangul, finishing first overall in 2:42:03 while her teammate Wayinshet Hailu finished in 2:47:04. Both women live in Ellicott City, MD. Erin Richard of Rochester Hills, Michigan placed third among the women finishing her first MCM in 2:48:11. “I loved the Marine Corps Marathon, it was great seeing all of the different monuments and the nation’s capital and the crowd support was great all the way through,” she said.

Also recognized following their first-place wins were hand cycle participants Leonardo Varon of Spain who completed the MCM in 1:23:17 and Carrie Finale of Pensacola, FL who finished in 1:52:18. The event hosted 99 hand cycle and wheelchair participants.

Each of the four Groundpounders, the four individuals who have participated in every MCM for 37 years, successfully completed today’s event. Will Brown finished in 5:37:33; Al Richmond crossed the finish in 5:50:23; Mel Williams completed the run in 5:51:59 and Matt Jaffee passed under the arch in 6:35:44.

The MCM10K presented by Aetna held in conjunction with the MCM enjoyed a turnout of 6,742 participants. The event began on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. and also finished at the Marine Corps War Memorial.

“The Marine Corps Marathon is proud to have achieved record participation despite a looming storm as large as Hurricane Sandy,” said MCM Director Rick Nealis. “It just demonstrates the importance the runners place on this patriotic mission.”

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