LAO CAI (VNS) — The firstinternational mountain marathon in Viet Nam took place in Sa Pa in the northern province of Lao Cai yesterday.
|Pasture posing: Two marathon participants pose while running on a narrow trail and passing by a terraced rice field. — Photo tuoitre.vn
In the 21km half-marathon, local ethnic runner Ly A Song was first to reach the finish line in 1h 54m 6s, followed by Sweden's Joakim Esaiasson and Philip Martin Eggold of the US.
Three other local ethnic runners finished in the top ten, with Thao A Su and Giang A Do claiming 4th and 5th places, and Vang A Pay finishing in ninth.
In the women's category, Samantha Janae Young from the US took first place in 2h 14m 51s, followed by Carolina Andres Abdo from Mexico and Camilla Nielsen from Denmark.
In the 42km full marathon race, Yong Wai Cheng from Singapore came first in the men's category in 4h 51m 50s. Jacob Green from Denmark bagged second prize, followed by Nicolas Perret Ducray.
Vietnamese "Running Man" Vu Xuan Tien, who shot to fame after running alongside the Arsenal team bus in Ha Noi in July, finished in 10th.
Annemette Skov from Denmark was the first woman to reach the finish line in 5h 25m 40s, followed by Patricia Pei Voon Lee of Malaysia. The third place was among Sanja Burns and Jacquelina Dukino from Australia.
In the 70km ultra-marathon, Simon Grimstrup from Denmark took first place in 7h 48m 40s, followed by Tino Meyer from Germany and Yeo Joon Kiat from Singapore.
Shiri Leventhal from the US won the women's category in 9h 25m 30s, followed by Denmark's Camilla Gry and Nora Barbara from Sweden.
More than 170 runners from 28 countries and regions took part in the event, which traversed stunning landscapes along the routes.
Danish Ambassador and Head of the marathon's organising board, John Nielsen said: "Runners from 28 countries participated and many have travelled far to come to the event. Most of the people have been preparing themselves for many months for the tough routes. Next year, I would like to see more Vietnamese runners, but I am happy to see that a Vietnamese runner won one of the categories."
He also said the local authorities had done a great job and contributed to the event's success.
The ambassador, who ran the half marathon, expects the race to be an annual event in the coming years.
The marathon was hosted by the Danish Embassy in collaboration with Topas Ecolodge and Novo Nordisk – the world leading company in diabetes prevention. — VNS