Athletes tackle 86 flights at NYC Empire Run-Up

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NEW YORK (AP) — Athletes from around the world will scamper up 86 breath-sapping flights of stairs at New York City’s annual Empire State Building Run-Up.

The event is being held Tuesday in Manhattan.

Contestants jostle in a stairwell wide enough for only two people at a time. One of the few distractions from the pain is when their ears start popping from the altitude.

It’s considered one of the world’s premier tower races.

Contestants begin their mad dash in the lobby and finish on the observation deck.

In the past, the best runners have made it up the 1,576 steps in about 9½ to 13½ minutes.


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