Juma Ikangaa and Douglas Wakiihuri
My first year shooting the New York Marathon. I positioned myself at the ramp off the Queensboro Bridge and waited for the lead runners to emerge on their way to First Avenue. I had a Pentax SLR with a manual focus lens and no motor drive, and I knew I would have only one chance to shoot the lead pack. I prefocused on a line on the street and waited until the runners just reached it, then got my shot of the leaders. Then, as the two leaders passed me, I did this quick pan shot of Juma Ikangaa, the previous year’s winner, and Douglas Wakiihuri, who went on to win that day. Then I walked to Central Park and shot the runners on the way to the finish line. In subsequent years I had press credentials and fancier camera equipment. I rode the women’s press truck one year; one year I sat shivering on the outer roadway of the Queensboro Bridge; one year I went to the start on Staten Island and stood on the concrete barrier separating the lanes on the Verrazano Bridge with over 20,000 runners pounding by on each side of me, hoping that I wouldn’t slip and be trampled. But this picture is my favorite of all the marathon photos I have taken.
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