Turns out ultramarathon runner wasn't actually the fastest human in history. She secretly took a car.

Originally published at: Turns out ultramarathon runner wasn't actually the fastest human in history. She secretly took a car. | Boing Boing


Deja boing


It was clearly a tribute to the marathon at the 1904 St Louis Olympic Games:

‘At the nine-mile mark cramps also plagued Lorz, who decided to hitch a ride in one of the accompanying automobiles, waving at spectators and fellow runners as he passed.’

And that’s not even the strangest part of that one race:


“I agreed to carry on in a non-competitive way. I made sure I didn’t overtake the runner in front when I saw her as I didn’t want to interfere with her race.”

At the finish line, she accepted the medal and grinned for the cameras.

It seriously didn’t occur to her for a second that she was interfering with the runner BEHIND her’s race?


If she was between the 2nd and 3rd place overall runners, there was a 40 minute gap.

But she says Her, so that makes me think she caught the second woman runner, who was about 7 minute ahead of the 3rd place woman runner. That’s a long distance between people - well out of visible range in a lot of trail races.

She’s apologized and given back the trophy. Yes, she should have been cognizant and not accepted it - that was a dumb move, but perhaps her brain was not going 100% after running 50 miles.

And despite the headline, this race was not where she set her records, nor is there a whit of evidence (nor any accusation) that her records are not totally honest.


The headline isn’t referencing her records.

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I can fully understand her decision to finish the race after her car ride, especially after race officials encouraged it. There’s nothing wrong with having fun and continuing to the end. Maybe I can even accept that in the excitement and exhaustion of the moment she accepted the bronze without thinking. But:

He said: "After the event, there was no attempt by Joasia to make us aware of what had happened and to give us an opportunity to correct the results or return the third place trophy during the course of the subsequent seven days.

She didn’t give it back for a WEEK. No matter how good her intentions may have been originally, that’s not okay. I’m not sure what your point is about the gaps between runners. The moment she accepted the car ride, she voluntarily dropped out of the race in any competitive sense. She shouldn’t have accepted any prize and she certainly shouldn’t have just kept it without bothering to inform the race officials at the finish line about what had happened earlier. It’s incredibly disrespectful to the other runners, as well as the checkpoint staff who encouraged her to continue in a non-competitive sense, urging her to have her fun, only for her to abuse their trust.


" I’m not sure what your point is about the gaps between runners. "

Runners in an ultra, and in this ultra judging by the times listed in the finish stats, can be pretty far apart at the finish. So if she rejoins the race between two runners, neither might even know she’s out there (with a big enough time gap). So she’s not hurting anyone’s race if she doesn’t pass them - well, right up until she accepts and keeps the trophy for a week!

We pretty much agree on everything else you’ve said.

I am a little surprised that no one removed her race number when she got out of the car. An oversight by the race volunteers, and one that should not have been a big deal at all, but an odd oversight.

I’ve seen some pretty exhausted people at finish lines, and I can understand if someone hands you a trophy and you say ‘oh hey, thanks.’

But as you’ve pointed out - she should have realized pretty quickly and given it back. Drink some chocolate milk (best recovery drink ever!), get your wits, hand back the trophy.


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