On November 3, Bill Rancic will find himself an apprentice again, at least as far as the 26.2-mile reality of the ING New York City Marathon is concerned.
Like softball star Jennie Finch (2011) and New York Giants receiver Amani Toomer (2010) before him, Rancic will be the last person to start the race and will partner with Timex, which will donate $1 to Fab-U-Wish for every runner he passes. Finch and Toomer, combined, earned $56,211 for their charities.
Rancic, 42, was the winner on the first season of The Apprentice, in 2004, and is now the co-star and co-executive producer of the reality show Bill and Giuliana with Giuliana Rancic, whom he married in 2007. In late 2011, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a double mastectomy. Fab-U-Wish grants wishes to women undergoing cancer treatment.
“I have always enjoyed running and it has been a long-time dream of mine to race in the ING New York City Marathon,” said Rancic in a statement. “Timex is allowing me to take my dream one step further by supporting my wife’s charity, and raising awareness and much-needed funds for those battling breast and ovarian cancer.”
A Chicago native, Rancic has twice run the Bank of America Chicago Marathon, in 1999 and 2001, when he ran 4:31.31.
For the ING New York City Marathon, Rancic will be trained by—and run the race with—Chris Thomas of the Timex Multisport Team. Thomas is the 2009 USA Triathlon Amateur Athlete of the Year and a six-time finisher of the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii.
Also the author of two books, You’re Hired and Beyond the Lemonade Stand, Rancic was asked in a 2011 interview with Men’s Health magazine whether running has taught him any lessons that translate to the business world.
“Well, in a lot of ways, running a marathon is like any big challenge in life,” he replied. “You need to take that overwhelming goal of 26.2 miles, and you break it down into manageable pieces. A lot of marathon runners focus on getting to mile eight, and then mile 12. And that’s how they make it to mile 26. I’ve used that strategy throughout my life, and it’s helped me succeed in my career.”
Fans can follow Rancic’s progress and view his GPS training logs on the Timex Sports Facebook Page, as well as @TimexSports and @BillRancic on Twitter.
Read the story from Timex here.
“Our races are to our sport what Wimbledon and the Australian, U.S., and French Opens are to tennis, and what the Masters, U.S., and British Opens and PGA Championship are to golf. Each race has the history, the tradition, the honor roll of legendary champions, and a special place in the eyes of all to make them stand apart from the other events.” Mary Wittenberg