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New York Road Runners Hosts 2012 NYC Marathon Kickoff Event

New York City Marathon Kickoff Event in Central Park - New York, NY - Apr 25, 2012 (credit: Marla Diamond / WCBS 880)

New York City Marathon Kickoff Event in Central Park – New York, NY – Apr 25, 2012 (credit: Marla Diamond / WCBS 880)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - Today was a big day for those hoping to run 26.2 miles in the 2012 New York City Marathon — including one recent Internet sensation.

WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond On The Story

The New York Road Runners held its annual kickoff event in Central Park near Columbus Circle.

There are many who were pre-qualified as eligible for the marathon, while others had to enter the lottery. It’s like Mega Millions, with slightly better odds, reported WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond.

“We expect over a 140,000 people in total to apply to the race. Over 90,000 in the lottery and we’ll pick about nine percent of that today,” Race Director Mary Wittenberg told Diamond.

There are a total of 50,000 slots for the race.

“I really don’t believe it still,” said Agnus Chen of Manhattan, who got the lucky number one in the lottery. She’ll be running her first New York City Marathon.

One of those not part of the lottery is Zeddie Little, known around the Internet as the “ridiculously photogenic guy.”

“I was running a race back home in Charleston, S.C., about three weeks ago and turned around and I just happened to be smiling at a camera and the rest is Internet history I guess,” Little told Diamond.

He will be running his first New York City Marathon and doesn’t guarantee he’ll look great on race day.

“But hopefully I’ll be in good shape,” he said.

He will be running for the John Ritter Foundation.

The race will be held on Sunday, Nov. 4, 2012 with the starting line on Staten Island and the finish line in Central Park.

Are you a runner? What’s your tip for those trying to get into the sport? Share it in the comments section below.