Yonkers Marathon

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The Yonkers Marathon, held in Yonkers, New York, is the second oldest marathon in the United States, after the Boston Marathon. The course of the Yonkers Marathon has been known as being tough and hilly; New York City Marathon founder Fred Lebow cited it as one of his favorite marathons.[1]

The Yonkers marathon (the standard distance, 42.195 km) is held on the third Sunday in October. In addition to the marathon, there is a half marathon race and a 5K course. At the end of the race there is a gathering and festivities centered on Van de Donck Park. In 1909 it was sponsored by the Mercury Athletic Club.[2]

For its 90th anniversary in 2015 the track has a newly designed course that has added greater variety by eliminating the double-loop, and replacing it with a single-loop that follows a scenic route along the Hudson River, and then goes all over the city, past parks, past the Dunwoodie Golf Course (that offers a glimpse of the distant New York City skyline), and through a variety of neighborhoods.[3][4] In 2016 the course reverted to the double-loop.[5][6]

The courses will be USATF certified and the marathon will be a Boston Marathon qualifier.[4] The race has seen an uptick in participants recently, averaging roughly 200 finishers during the 2010s, double the number from the prior decade.[7]

The first Yonkers Marathon was held on Thanksgiving Day 1907.[8] From 1907 to 1945, the race was typically held in November.[9] Johnny Hayes and Jim Crowley won the first two races.[9][10][nb 1]

Sammy Mellor helped establish the Yonkers Marathon with Edward Wetmore Kinsley, and finished second in the event's first two runnings.[10][13][14]


  1. ^ Some references incorrectly state that Robert Fowler broke Johnny Hayes' world best in the marathon at the 1909 Yonkers Marathon. Fowler's mark was actually set at the Empire City Marathon on January 1, 1909.[11][12]


  1. ^ Corbitt, Ted (2003). "Ted Corbitt: A Willingness to Suffer". In Kislevitz, Gail Waesche. The Spirit of the Marathon: What to Expect in Your First Marathon and How to Run Them the Rest of Your Life. Halcottsville, New York: Breakaway Books. p. 234. ISBN 978-1-891369-36-0. 
  2. ^ "MARATHON VICTORY FOR HARRY JENSEN; Finishes First in Yonkers Event With a Half Mile Advantage. SHERIDAN RUNS SECOND Leads for Twenty-three Miles, When Pastime Athlete Overhauls Him -- Winner's Time, 2:46:43 1-5" (pdf). The New York Times. New York. November 28, 1909. Retrieved May 6, 2012. 
  3. ^ Official website
  4. ^ a b [1] Aris, Hezi. "City of Yonkers Celebrates 90th Running of Yonkers Marathon Sunday, October 18, 2015". Yonkers Tribune. August 18, 2015
  5. ^ "Yonkers Marathon Map". Yonkers Marathon. Retrieved 2016-11-21. 
  6. ^ "Albany firm to oversee Yonkers Marathon race weekend". lohud.com. Retrieved 2016-11-21. 
  7. ^ http://www.marathonguide.com/races/racedetails.cfm?MIDD=1055080921
  8. ^ Cooper, Pamela (1999). "The New York City Marathon Culture". The American Marathon. Syracuse, New York: Syracuse University Press. p. 33. ISBN 978-0-8156-0573-7. 
  9. ^ a b Association of Road Racing Statisticians. Yonkers Marathon. Retrieved May 15, 2010
  10. ^ a b "J.F. CROWLEY WINS YONKERS MARATHON; Irish-American Runner Leads Big Field Over Westchester County Roads.", New York Times, p. 7, November 27, 1908, retrieved May 15, 2010 
  11. ^ "POLICE BREAK UP YONKERS MARATHON; Order Official Off Track and Referee Sullivan Stops the Contest.", New York Times, p. 7, January 2, 1909, retrieved May 15, 2010 
  12. ^ Sullivan, J.E., ed. (1910), "Marathon Road Races", Spalding's Official Athletic Almanac for 1910, Group XII. No. 1, New York: American Sports Publishing Co., p. 93 
  13. ^ "Samuel Mellor Marathoner". www.yonkersny.gov. Yonkers, New York: City of Yonkers. September 11, 2007. Archived from the original on December 23, 2010. Retrieved February 7, 2011. 
  14. ^ "Edward Wetmore Kinsley". www.yonkersny.gov. Yonkers, New York: City of Yonkers. September 11, 2007. Archived from the original on December 23, 2010. Retrieved February 7, 2011. 

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