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WMRA 3rd Long Distance Mountain Running Challenge - Preview
The famous Pikes Peak Marathon (Colorado, USA) is the stage for this years World Mountain Running Association Challenge on Sunday 20th August.
Starting at an altitude of 1936m, at Manitou Springs, athletes run up and down the 4340m high mountain covering a distance of 42km.
Race record holder (3 hours 16 minutes 39seconds) and five times winner on Pikes Peak, Matt Carpenter (USA), is the local hero defending his record against newcomers attracted by the new status of the race. He will be challenged by World silver medallist Toni Vencelj (SLO) and top marathon runner Uli Steidl (GER), along with an impressive squad of Mexicans.
Last years Pikes Peak runner-up, local girl Danielle Ballengee from Boulder, is under threat from the current World champion, Emma Murray (AUS). Emmas preparation has been meticulous having availed herself of the high altitude training facility provided by the Australian Sports Federation in Canberra.
The race is limited to 800 runners for safety reasons and the entry list was filled in less than 24 hours.
Danny Hughes for the IAAF