'P. Diddy' Combs Finishes NYC Marathon

By | November 3, 2003 at 12:00 AM

Running on a bum right knee and after just two months of training, hip-hop entrepreneur Sean “P. Diddy” Combs completed the grueling New York City Marathon, raising $2 million for children – double what he had planned.

“Never in my life have I ever experienced anything as crazy as this,” Combs said Sunday at a news conference. “It was a beautiful experience.”

Combs’ official race time was 4:14:54. It was his first marathon.

The producer-rapper said he had raised $2 million since announcing in September that he would run. The money will be divided among two children’s charities and New York City public schools.

Combs said he gained support from an NBC reporter covering the race who ran with him, as well as from children in Harlem who cheered him on.

“I definitely wanted to stop,” Combs said. “This is definitely a life-changing experience for me because I did not stop.”

Known on the course simply as No. 30,972, Combs kept a respectable pace for much of the 26.2-mile race. As he crossed the finish line, he raised both arms in triumph.

Among his donors: Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who pitched in $10,000; rapper Jay-Z, who gave $25,000; and gossip-column regulars Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez, who gave a combined $78,000.

Combs shed about 15 pounds in training, and developed severe tendinitis in his right knee.

“Twenty-six miles isn’t a publicity stunt,” he said after the race.

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