Central Park 10k Ends In Record Time
Last weekend's Healthy Kidney 10k saw over 7800 finishers on a sunny New York City day. A deep field ran the race, with ten entrants boasting personal-best times of 28 minutes or less.
At the end of the race, a new record of 27:42 had been set by Gebregziabher Debremariam for Central Park's hilly 6.2 mile course. The second place finisher, Peter Kamais, was a mere 7 seconds behind, finishing one second slower than the previous course record of 27:48.
In the women's race, an event record was set by Buzunesh Deba with a time of 33:09. Second place was claimed by Frances Koons in 33:31. Koons provided the story of the weekend by donating all $500 of her prize money to the National Kidney Foundation.
Her generosity is noteworthy, as the Foundation is the beneficiary of the event (to the tune of $470,000 from the United Arab Emirates, the event sponsor) but also because Koons is herself a kidney cancer survivor.
Koons was diagnosed with renal cell carcinoma in 2007 while a student athlete at Villanova University. The diagnosis came after an initially strong start to her college career gad faltered, and Koons opted for a risky surgical procedure involving laparoscopic removal of the tumor from her kidney to ensure that she would be able to return to running.
Koons will appear at the USATF High Performance track meet next weekend in Los Angeles, and then go on to the USATF Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the end of June. She is eventually hoping to make an appearance at the 2012 Olympics in London.