2019 N.Y.C. Marathon in Photos

The New York City Marathon is like the city itself.

Sprawling across five boroughs, this race takes all kinds of people. Some of the fastest in the world are here, as are plenty of folks who will take six, seven or 10 hours to complete the 26.2-mile race. They will cross the finish line after sundown.

There are racers with two legs and racers with no legs. There are runners who can see and others who can’t. There are people who run the course nearly nude, and others who run it in a three-piece suit.

It is loud almost the entire way, from the moment runners step off the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, until they take those final steps near Tavern on the Green in Central Park.

It is chaotic. The starting village at Fort Wadsworth is something of a pop-up shelter. The turns through Brooklyn, the bridges into each borough, the sea of discarded paper cups that cover the ground after the fluid stations are all an adventure to navigate.

But to experience all this is to fall in love with it, especially on a day when the air is crisp, the sky is blue and the sun and all those hundreds of thousands of people cheering for 50,000-plus runners feel as warm as a loving embrace from an old friend.

It’s entirely possible that every big city is at its best on marathon day. These races, this mass of humanity lining up and traversing 26.2 miles just for the fun of it as another mass of humanity cheers them on, is unique to this period in human history. This sort of thing didn’t happen 200 or 500 or 1,000 or 10,000 years ago.

Their loss.

The Staten Island Ferry at sunrise has picturesque views of the Manhattan skyline as runners make their way to the start of the race.

One of the first magical moments of marathon day comes as they stand on the deck of the ferry and watch the sun rise over Brooklyn. Runners treat the moment with silence and respect.

Runners at the starting village in Staten Island wait for the race to begin and try to keep warm in the chilly morning.

A runner rests at the start village.

The marathon route is prepared early Sunday morning in Queens.

Volunteers in Brooklyn and Queens prepare fluid stations for the runners.

Joe Trilli on the drums and his brother, Anthony Trilli, play in a band called the Flukes and get ready for the runners to come through Sunset Park, Brooklyn.

Two wheelchair racers pass a storefront in Queens.

Crossing the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge is one of the first parts of the race.

Jose Argenes Jimenez Hernandez of Santa Barbara, Costa Rica, heads down Rider Avenue in the Bronx, while spectators watch the wheelchair race on First Avenue in Manhattan.

Volunteers hand out thermal blankets at the finish line. Temperatures were in the 40s and low 50s during the race.

Runners racing through Queens.

Fidel Neria wears a banner with the colors of the Mexican flag as he cheers for participants in Sunset Park.

In addition to the blankets, medals await the runners as they finish.

Volunteers help keep the streets clean as runners discard paper cups at hydrating stations.

Staying hydrated on East 138th Street in the Bronx.

Ronan Barbier and Leneures Aurore embrace during the marathon in Brooklyn.

Runners in the Bronx and crossing the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge.

Runners stretch at the end of 26.2 miles.

Bags of Gatorade at the end of the race.

A runner at the Columbus Circle subway station.