Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Lion launched the 9th annual Jerusalem Winner Marathon at a press conference at Mamila Rooftop, near the Jaffa Gate and Old City, on Thursday morning, prior to the early Friday morning event.

A record 40,000 runners will participate in the 9th Jerusalem Winner Marathon, which is expected to bring a 4,600 international runners and an unprecedented 20 million in revenue to the city, which will be invested in the development of businesses and social projects in the city.

In his remarks Mayor Lion said,  "The Jerusalem Winner Marathon is not only a sporting event; it is a true festival, a holiday in Jerusalem.  The gates of Jerusalem have always been open to all. We see this clearly at the Jerusalem Marathon - 40,000 running through the Jewish capital, a 15% increase from last year, and making this the largest Jerusalem Marathon ever! The course tomorrow highlights the best of our city: showcasing Jerusalem's many sites that are admired by billions, as well as the progress we have made – in art, culture, tourism, tech, and medicine. Runners will see the beautiful mosaic of cultures and communities in our city, and will witness the unity of Jerusalem with their own eyes."

The Jerusalem Winner Marathon includes 6 tracks: - Full marathon: 42.2 km, half marathon: 21.1 km,10km, 5km - two tracks: competitive and social, a short family fun run of 1.7 km,  and a social run of 800 m designed for groups with special needs and wheelchairs.

The Jerusalem Winner Marathon is the largest social marathon in Israel, which includes the special 800 meter social track, in which 6,000 runners and 15 associations are expected to participate. Among the non-profit organizations participating are Aleh, Shalva, Kav L'Chaim, the Israel Cancer Association, the Center for Rape Victims and Sexual Assault, the Koby Mandell Foundation, Kav LaNoar, Chayenu, the Michael Levine Lone Soldier Center, Yachad, One Family, Tzomet Center, Sulam, and more.  

At the launch event the elite international runners were introduced to Mayor Lion and posed for photos. Heavy rain all day Thursday meant all photos at the launch were taken inside.

The Jerusalem Winner Marathon is run by the Sports Department of the Jerusalem Municipality, in cooperation with the Jerusalem Development Authority and with the support and assistance of the Jerusalem Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Culture and Sport, and under the auspices of Toto Winner. The marathon is produced by Target Market.