(December 14, 2014) Most likely inspired by her close friend and fellow tennis pro Caroline Wozniacki, who completed the New York City Marathon in November, tennis’ world No. 1 Serena Williams hit the road with more than two thousand runners from South Florida and around the country for the inaugural Serena Williams Ultimate RUN South Beach on Sunday.
Williams ran her first quarter marathon among others who also participated in the 5K Run/Walk and Team Challenge – bringing together runners of all ages and abilities. The run raised money for the Serena Williams Fund, which provides assistance to families affected by violent crimes and providing underprivileged youth around the world with the highest quality of education available to them. Serena’s sister, Venus Williams, also gave her support by running the 5K.
Serena who completed the 6. 55 mile run in 1 hour 14 minutes, said after the race: “Today’s run was so enjoyable and the spirit of everyone who came out was so passionate which helped me to build the energy I needed for my first quarter marathon. I’ve never ran that far before, so I had to pace myself, but I was pleased with my finish time. I’d like to thank all the sponsors and everyone who participated in the run to help raise money for underprivileged youth around the world.”
South Beach’s famous Ocean Drive which was closed to traffic for the Ultimate Run’s was the scene for the start and finish for the race. The course took runners through South Beach. Past New York City Marathon, Boston Marathon winner and 1984 Olympian, Alberto Salazar, fired the starting gun for the Ultimate Run.
“Our inaugural Serena Williams Ultimate Run was quite a memorable event,” said Marc Wachter, the event’s executive producer. “Runners of all ages and abilities were very excited to come out in their thousands on a very early and crisp Miami December morning to run alongside Serena for a great cause. We are thrilled to have had such an iconic athlete behind the first in our Ultimate Run series and Serena’s enthusiasm really gave every participant the Ultimate experience. We look forward to making this one of Miami’s most popular sporting occasions on South Florida’s annual event calendar.”
Event sponsors included Nike, Gatorade, Delta, Beats by Dre and MISSION Athletecare.