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Running In The New York City Marathon Means Winning A Lottery, Literally

Competitors cross the finish line in Central Park for the New York City Marathon - New York, NY - Nov 7, 2010 (credit: Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Competitors cross the finish line in Central Park for the New York City Marathon – New York, NY – Nov 7, 2010 (credit: Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

diamond_feature Marla Diamond
I began my career at WCBS in the fall of 1997 as the station's New...
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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork / AP) - Runners came to Central Park Wednesday with nervous anticipation.

New York City Marathon race director Mary Wittenberg says 93,000 people applied to the  lottery for a chance to run. Winners were announced today near Columbus Circle.

“These are the folks that are crossing their fingers today. They have about a 1 in 10 chance of getting in,” Wittenberg told WCBS 880 reporter and former NYC marathon runner Marla Diamond. “I think we’re now harder to get into than Harvard.”

WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond: 93,000 Have Applies To Run

When asked why she wanted to run in the New York City Marathon, one runner said, “Because I’m crazy!”

Another said, “It’s either this or start wearing sweats to the office.”

Wittenberg says there are no plans to change the course of the race, but in the future they may be able to add more runners by adding to the staggered start times.

2009 men’s winner Meb Keflezighi will compete in the New York City Marathon this fall, and he’ll be joined by Olympic speedskating gold medalist Apolo Anton Ohno.

The New York Road Runners announced Wednesday that Keflezighi will compete along with defending champions Gebre Gebremariam of Ethiopia and Edna Kiplagat of Kenya.

Keflezighi will run his seventh NYC Marathon. He hopes to qualify for the marathon at the 2012 London Olympics and use the race as training ahead of the games.

The 35-year-old Keflezighi won the New York City Marathon in 2009, the first American to do so since 1982. Ohno will be running his first marathon.

The New York Road Runners say the 2010 event had an economic impact of $340 million.

WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond On The Economic Impact

The New York City Marathon starts on Staten Island on November 6, 2011.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)