Perfect weather makes for an enjoyable 32nd annual Blue Cross Broad Street Run
Philadelphia, PA - May 2, 2011 - It was a picture perfect day for running yesterday - mild weather and little to no wind - as more than 25,200 runners streaked down Broad Street from Somerville Street in north Philadelphia to the Philadelphia Navy Yard where they crossed the finish line in the nation's largest 10-miler, the 32nd Blue Cross Broad Street Run, sponsored by Independence Blue Cross (IBC). Attracting runners from nearly every state and several foreign countries and more than 9,000 IBC members, this year's race was won by Ethiopia's Ketema Nigusse in the men's division with a time of 46 minutes and 29 seconds, and Morocco-born Malika Mejdoubin in the women's division with a time of 55 minutes, 40 seconds.
The top winners each received a $1,500 prize and an etched glass trophy and will have their names added to the Independence Cup, a silver trophy engraved with the names of winners from the past 31 years.
"Thanks to the tens of thousands of runners, fans, and volunteers, and to the City, this year's Blue Cross Broad Street Run was another huge success, helping to raise awareness and money for cancer and bringing our community together in fitness and spirit," said Daniel J. Hilferty, IBC's president and chief executive officer, who ran the race this year. "As the lead sponsor for the past 15 years, we're proud to be part of an annual event that is so beloved by people in our region and throughout the running community in our nation and the world."
In the past 10 years, the race has raised more than $550,000 for the American Cancer Society. All donations and pledge money go to cancer research and patient care.
Taking second and third places in the men's division were Martin Fagan with a time of 46:39 and Deresse Deniboba with a time of 46:46. In the women's division, Yihunlish Bekele Delelacha captured second place with a time of 55:46 and Tezeta Dengersa took third place with a time of 56:10.
Tony Nogueira from Glen Ridge, NJ was the first place men's finisher in the wheelchair race with a time of 35:25, and Chelsea Crytzer placed first among the women with a time of 54: 48.
The Blue Cross Broad Street Run was the second of three annual fitness events IBC sponsors each year. The first, National Walk @ Lunch Day, was held April 27 and is a national event spearheaded by the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association and held simultaneously in cities in all 50 states to encourage employees to walk at lunchtime. IBC hosted the most walkers among all national Blue plans in 2010, and broke participation records in 2011 with more than 100 employer groups from five counties.
The third annual fitness event that IBC also sponsors is the American Diabetes Association Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes on October 1. This family-and team-friendly 5K walk on West River Drive strives to raise awareness about and money for research and education about diabetes, a debilitating chronic illness that affects nearly 26 million adults and children. Last year's Philadelphia walk was one of the most successful of more than 160 such walks across the nation, and attracted more than 3,600 walkers who raised $545,000.
About the Blue Cross Broad Street Run
The Blue Cross Broad Street Run is managed by the Philadelphia Recreation Department with the cooperation of city agencies and more than 45 volunteer groups. The race is held the first Sunday in May, and the course includes a variety of Philadelphia neighborhoods along Broad Street. The race raises funds for the American Cancer Society.
About Independence Blue Cross
Independence Blue Cross is a leading health insurer in Southeastern Pennsylvania. IBC and its affiliates provide coverage to nearly 3.1 million people. For 73 years, Independence Blue Cross has offered high-quality health care coverage tailored to meet the changing needs of members, employers, and health care professionals. Independence Blue Cross is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans. Visit IBC's race site at Blue Cross Broad Street Run.