British athlete Paula Radcliffe and South African runner Hendrik Ramaala have won the women's and men's races in the New York City Marathon.
Paula Radcliffe rebounded from a disappointing performance in the Athens Olympics in August, when she dropped out before finishing the marathon, due to leg and stomach pains.
This time, Ms. Radcliffe crossed the finish line first. Her time, two hours, 23 minutes, and 10 seconds, was not a personal best, but she says winning was all she wanted to do.
"What mattered was coming here and winning the race," she said. "It did not matter about time, it just meant running well and enjoying the atmosphere, enjoying the race."
The final moments of the women's race were the closest in New York City marathon history, with Kenyan runner Susan Chepkemei finishing four seconds behind Ms. Radcliffe. The two women embraced after crossing the finish line.
South African Hendrik Ramaala won the men's race, marking his first-ever marathon victory, with a running time of two hours, nine minutes, and 28 seconds.
Mr. Ramaala says winning the New York City marathon is a dream come true.
"I have always wanted to win a big city marathon. Today, I got it. I think, I want to win some more," he said.
American Olympic silver medalist Meb Keflezighi took second place in the men's race.
Other favorites, American Deena Kastor and Kenya's Michael Rotich dropped out of the race early because of apparent injuries.
Thirty-five-thousand runners took part in the annual marathon, which is watched by about 270 million running enthusiasts around the world.