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At Long Last, Teddy Wins Nationals' Presidents Race

Teddy has taken down Abe, Tom, and George for the first time in Presidents race history.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/46347505@N05/4845097120/
Teddy has taken down Abe, Tom, and George for the first time in Presidents race history.

Teddy Roosevelt has won his first ever President's race, defeating George Washington, Abe Lincoln and Thomas Jefferson for the first time since the race's inception in July 2006.

Racing during a break in the Nationals' regular-season finale against the Philadelphia Phillies, Teddy was trailing, according to reports from the team. But with an assist from the Philly Phanatic, Teddy, wearing a red headband and Usain Bolt-inspired gold running shoes, crossed first to an ovation from the Nats crowd.

Victory had proved elusive for Teddy, as everything from confusion to interference from other teams' mascots had prevented his victory. He's crossed the finish line first on several occasions, but was disqualified each time for cheating using zip-lines, golf carts and even a bicycle-pulled rickshaw. He defeated the Orioles mascot "The Bird" in a one-on-one grudge match in 2008, but that was judged not to count towards the official standings.

It's a cause for celebration for fans of the Nationals, who are also celebrating a return to the playoffs and their first National League East Division crown since 1933.

Social media has blown up with the momentous news. D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray tweeted his congratulations and Sen. John McCain tweeted, "#Teddy won! We've defeated the massive left wing conspiracy!"

For his part, the long-suffering mascot said, "I'm just getting warmed up! Time to get ready for the postseason! You ain't seen nothing yet! The Rough Rider has arrived!"

The big question moving forward is what the Nationals will do now that one of their most beloved stadium traditions has reached its climax. For now, however, fans will just have to enjoy the win.

NPR

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