Inspired by a woman battling breast cancer, Patty Fulton of Silver Spring was the first female finisher yesterday in the 10th annual National Race for the Cure. Fulton, 33, completed the five-kilometer event in 17 minutes 9 seconds.

Phillipe Rolly, a 26-year-old native of France who recently moved to Arlington, won the race -- which began at Constitution Avenue and 12th Street, and finished at Pennsylvania Avenue and 13th Street -- in a personal-best 14:38. Virginia Beach's Carlos Moleda, 36, whose mother-in-law is a breast cancer survivor, won the wheelchair race for the third straight year in 12:17.

Susanne Nearman of Alexandria was the first breast cancer survivor to finish, at 19:46. An estimated 2,500 breast cancer survivors wearing pink shirts and pink hats were among the record 66,148 participants. Two of the more notable entrants were Vice President Gore and his wife, Tipper, who were participating in the event for the seventh time.

Organizers billed the race as the world's largest 5K, and it raised more than $2.5 million for breast cancer research, education and screening programs. Last year, 51,000 participated in the Race for the Cure.

Fulton, who has run the race five times but never finished better than sixth, was asked by Ada Shepherd, a friend of her secretary, to race for her. In the past, Fulton said, she had run the race because it was for a good cause, not because she was motivated by a personal request. "My secretary has told me about what [Shepherd] has been going through," Fulton said. "When [Shepherd] called me up, I said `Sure, no problem.' I can't wait to call her when I get home."

Results on Page D15

FREIHOFER'S RUN FOR WOMEN: Cheri Kenah of Reston edged Libbie Hickman of Fort Collins, Colo., near the finish line to win the event in Albany, N.Y. Both were timed at 15:31. The race, which doubled as the USA national women's 5K championship, had a $10,000 first prize and a first-class field that included eight-time winner Lynn Jennings and 1997 champion Elva Dryer.