American Marathon Hero Meb Keflezighi and Tennis Star Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark to Run 2014 TCS New York City Marathon as New York Road Runners Team for Kids Ambassadors
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New York, July 31, 2014—Meb Keflezighi, the 2014 Boston Marathon champion and winner of the 2009 New York City Marathon, and Caroline Wozniacki, formerly the top-ranked player in the world and winner of the recent Istanbul Cup, will run as Team for Kids Ambassadors at the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon on Sunday, November 2, 2014, it was announced today by Mary Wittenberg, president and CEO of New York Road Runners.
“We’re excited to welcome two of the world’s top athletes to the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon as Team for Kids Ambassadors,” said Wittenberg. “Both Meb, who is the ultimate example of the American Dream, and Caroline, who has reached the pinnacle of the tennis world, will transcend their roles as professional athletes by representing the hundreds of thousands of young people who benefit from NYRR’s free youth running programs and initiatives. Meb will highlight a world-class field of athletes competing for the marathon title, while Caroline will join thousands of runners raising critical funds for worthy charities. They’ll serve as inspirations to the 50,000 runners and millions of fans lining the streets of the City’s five boroughs and watching the race broadcast around the world.”
Keflezighi, 39, of San Diego, CA, lengthened his remarkable stay atop the U.S. marathon rankings with a victory at the 2014 Boston Marathon, becoming the first American man to win the race since Greg Meyer in 1983. Similarly, in 2009, he became the first American since Alberto Salazar in 1982 to win the New York City Marathon. Keflezighi’s sixth-place finish in 2011 was his sixth top-10 finish at the race.
“I am excited to be running the TCS New York City Marathon for the ninth time. This is a very special race and city for me,” Keflezighi said. “Additionally, I am honored to be a Team for Kids Ambassador and raise funds for the MEB Foundation.”
A three-time Olympian, Keflezighi captured the silver medal at the 2004 Athens Olympic Marathon and took fourth place in the 2012 London Olympic Marathon, the only top-five performances by an American man in the event since Frank Shorter’s silver-medal performance in 1976. Keflezighi, a former American record-holder at 10,000 meters, has won more than 20 national championships in track and field, cross country, and road racing.
Wozniacki, 24, of Odense, Denmark, captured the TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Cup on July 20; it was her 22nd WTA title. She held the number-one spot in the WTA rankings for 67 weeks during 2010 and 2011, after qualifying for her first Grand Slam tournament final at the 2009 U.S. Open. In June of 2009, Wozniacki became the first Danish player in history to rank among the world’s top 30 women. A two-time Olympian, she was the 2006 Wimbledon junior singles champion. Wozniacki is currently ranked number 13 in the world by the WTA and will be competing in the 2014 U.S. Open, which will begin on August 25. The TCS New York City Marathon will be her road-racing debut.
“I can’t wait to trade my tennis racquet for a pair of running shoes and take part in the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon as a New York Road Runners Team for Kids Ambassador,” said Wozniacki. “I grew up in a family where sports were a huge part of our lives, and I learned from a young age the importance of being active. That’s why running for Team for Kids is so important to me. When I cross the finish line in Central Park, it will be one of the most rewarding days of my life, not only because of the personal accomplishment, but also because it will help thousands of kids to get healthy and fit through sports.”
As Team for Kids Ambassadors, Keflezighi and Wozniacki will support and raise funds for the NYRR Team for Kids charity running team. Team for Kids is a committed group of adult runners from around the world who add meaning to their miles by raising funds for youth running programs for kids who would otherwise have little or no access to regular physical activity. These programs serve more than 200,000 schoolchildren in New York City’s five boroughs and around the country. Both athletes will participate in Team for Kids activities during race week and will represent more than 1,700 Team for Kids runners, who will raise an estimated $4.5 million on race day.
Keflezighi and Wozniacki will raise funds for Team for Kids by using NYRR’s partner fundraising platform, CrowdRise. In addition to donating to Team for Kids, Keflezighi’s fans can also choose to donate to The MEB Foundation, which empowers youth and their families to “Maintain Excellent Balance” by providing the tools and resources needed to lead healthy lifestyles.
Donations to Team for Kids on behalf of Wozniacki’s run can be made at www.crowdrise.com/carolinew.
Donations to Team for Kids and to The MEB Foundation on behalf of Keflezighi’s run can be made atwww.crowdrise.com/meb.
Keflezighi and Wozniacki can be followed on twitter at @runmeb and @CaroWozniacki, respectively.
Approximately 300 official charity partner organizations and more than 7,000 charity runners are expected to raise over $25 million in donations while participating in the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon.
The TCS New York City Marathon will be televised live nationally on ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes+ from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. EST. For those who have video subscriptions with affiliated providers, the race will also be available via WatchESPN. The race will be broadcast live in the New York City metropolitan area on WABC-TV from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. EST. Viewers can also watch the race on 7online or via WatchABC on mobile devices (for participating cable providers). Pre-race features from the start at Fort Wadsworth will be broadcast live at 7:00 a.m. on WABC-TV, 7online.com, and WatchABC, and a national highlights show will air from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. on local ABC affiliates. International viewers can watch the broadcast via a live digital stream from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. EST on 7online.com or via a variety of global broadcast partners (international viewers should check local listings).
Last year, 50,266 runners crossed the finish line of the New York City Marathon, making it the world’s largest marathon ever. Runners from more than 100 countries and each of the 50 states participated. The male and female winners were both from Kenya: Geoffrey Mutai, who became a two-time reigning champion, and Priscah Jeptoo, who came from more than a half-mile behind to take the lead in the race’s final three miles.
About the TCS New York City Marathon
The TCS New York City Marathon is the most popular and inclusive marathon in the world, attracting the world’s top professional athletes and a vast range of recreational runners. The race began in 1970 with just 127 entrants racing four laps of Central Park. Today, an estimated 50,000 runners from around the world tour New York City’s five boroughs, starting on Staten Island at the foot of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge and finishing in Central Park. Participants include Olympians, Paralympians, wheelchair racers, top age-group competitors, and many thousands who run for charity and to achieve their own personal goals. Millions of fans cheer the runners from the streets and watch the global television broadcast. The race is part of the World Marathon Majors, an alliance of the world’s six biggest marathons that determines each year’s top male and top female marathoner. The TCS New York City Marathon is the premier event of New York Road Runners, the world’s foremost community running organization, whose mission is to help and inspire people through running. Tata Consultancy Services, a leading global IT services, consulting, and business solutions organization, is the Premier Partner of NYRR and is in its inaugural year as title sponsor of the TCS New York City Marathon.