- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 30, 2001

Ludmila Petrova left Washington by train yesterday afternoon for New York City, where she will defend her title at the Big Apple's annual marathon on Nov. 4.
"My training has been going very well," the 33-year-old Russian said through interpreter Konstantin Selinevich. "Everything is going according to plan."
Petrova, who took six years off from running from 1988 to 1994 to have two daughters, Alexandra and Inna, shocked the running world and herself with a major personal best 2:25:45 in the 2000 New York City Marathon.
"It was a shock when I realized that I had won the race," Petrova said as she awaited the Acela train at Union Station. "I didn't expect to win. I still cannot believe it. Almost until I saw the finish line with 300 feet to go, I looked back and I couldn't believe nobody was behind me."
"I had a dream to win a big race," said Petrova, who added she is interested in training with the Russian enclave in Gaithersburg after the marathon. "Now my goal is to break the Russian national record [2:23] and win an Olympic medal."
Gaithersburg-based Russian Silvia Skvortsova has signed on to pace Petrova for the first 25 kilometers at New York, according to Selinevich.
Steve Nearman

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