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Thousands of runners and walkers hit the pavement just after 6 a.m. on Sunday to take part in the Las Vegas Marathon 2007.
The race began with an explosion of fireworks as the runners and walkers took off from a parking lot near the Mandalay Bay Hotel. The marathon started at 6:07 a.m. under perfect weather conditions -- cold but not windy.
A runner from Russia, Sylvia Skvortsova, won the Las Vegas Marathon 2007 with an finishing time of 2:29:01. The top men's finisher is Christopher Chebobibich from Kenya, who will take home $20,000. His finishing time was 2:16:49. The women are given an 18 minute lead in the race and this is the first time a woman has won the challenge. The top local winner, Abebe Yimer, a former Ethiopian, who now lives in Clark County will take home $10,000.
Numerous roads around the valley were closed, including the Las Vegas Strip, to accommodate the marathon participants.
Many of the runners in this year's Las Vegas Marathon have been in training since early summer. A large number of people just took part in the half-marathon. However, there was some confusion with some of the lead runners in the half-marathon making a wrong turn and ending up on the course for the 26.2 mile marathon.
This year's marathon drew nearly 17,000 participants and there were about 4,000 volunteers on hand to support the runners at the mile markers with water and food.
Entertainment, including a performance by the Blue Man Group, a Spamalot water station and a finish line performance by the Cirque du Soleil Jam Band greeted the marathon participants. There was also Run-Through Wedding Chapel for nearly 50 couples who were getting married or renewing their vows.
This year's runners will include runners from 42 countries including Russia, Kenya and Australia. Last year's two top finishers were from Kenya.
Josephe Kahugo of Kenya who won the 2006 marathon.
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