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Third Patagonian International Marathon

3rd October 2014


Matthew Flaherty breaks 63 km record at the 3RD PATAGONIAN INTERNATIONAL MARATHON

  • 3rd The third edition of the Patagonian International Marathon featured 980 runners from 31 countries around the world running in four race distances: ultramarathon 63km, marathon 42km, half-marathon 21km, and a 10km distance race.
  • Matthew Flaherty of the United States broke the 63k distance record with a time of 04:19:17.2, 5 minutes faster than previous record holder South African Ryan Sandes’ time of 4:24:28.
  • The 21km race distance finished in superb fashion, as the top three male racers all finished within ten minutes of each other, with Benjamín Maturana Tamargo of Chile claiming first place in a time of 01:18:45.9.

Torres del Paine, September 27, 2014 – The third edition of the Patagonian International Marathon officially came to an end last Saturday on a spectacular day in the majestic Torres del Paine National Park, recently voted as an eighth wonder of the world and located in Chile’s extreme south, the Magellan and Antarctic region. The event, hosted by NIGSA Events & Expeditions, the organization who orchestrated the world-renowned Patagonian Expedition Race, which was deemed by BBC as “the world’s last wild race,” included 980 runners from 31 countries competing in four challenging race distances: ultra marathon, 63km; marathon, 42km; half marathon 21km; and a 10km distance race.

The 63km ultramarathon, which began in the dark outside of Lago Grey’s Guardería, was the longest of the four distances, but was by no means the least exciting, as it saw Matthew Flaherty of the United States break the event’s previous record holder South African ultramarathon runner Ryan Sandes’ time of 4:24:28, finishing the race in just over five minutes less, in a time of 04:19:17.2. Flaherty, who was one of the event’s 53 runners from 8 countries, finished the race more than an hour before the other competitors, as Cristian Daniel Morales of Argentina ran the second fastest time in 05:39:57.9. “I hurt a lot in the last 10km,” said Flaherty, “but I was uplifted by both the beautiful mountain-scape above me and the many 10km racers around me. My goal coming into the race was to set the record, and I was excited and grateful to accomplish that goal.” Soledad Cornejo Vargas of Chile won the race for the women, finishing the 63km in 05:52:27.2.

The 42km race, which began 2 hours after the ultramarathon in Puente Weber, featured 163 runners from 19 countries. Hansmartin Spatzier of Germany finished the course first among the men in a time of 03:25:21.6, while Cindy Evelyn Ramírez Brito of Chile won the event for the females, finishing in a time of 03:45:25.7.

The next, and the day’s most competitive event, was the half-marathon, where the top 3 male finishers were not only within ten minutes of each other, but also all from the same age bracket, ranging from 30-39 year olds. Benjamín Maturana Tamargo from Chile finished the 21km before the other 441 runners from 21 countries, which started in the Sector Mirador Nordenskjöld, by completing the race in a time of 01:18:45.9, being just 3 minutes faster than second place Leonidas Hernández Velásquez of Chile, 01:21:49.1, and only seven minutes before third place Michael Doyle of Canada, editor-and-chief at Canadian Running Magazine, crossed the finish line after 01:25:45.7. For the women, Daniela Beatriz Lucero Gallardo from Chile took home first place by finishing in 01:40:38.9, arriving just under three minutes faster than second place Jocelyn Bradley of Australia, who finished in a time of 01:43:26.2.

The 10km distance race included 323 runners from 15 countries, beginning on the shoreline of Partería Laguna Amarga. The event’s winners were Juan Pablo Farías Aninat of Chile for the men, who was able to complete the race in less than 50 minutes, crossing the finish line in exactly 00:48:24.9, and Karina Silvana Gallardo Cárcamo for the females, who finished in just over an hour, with a time of 01:02:58.6.

The third edition continued NIGSA’s effort towards improving the region’s touristic and environmental development, as it once again featured “Corre y Reforesta” (Run and Reforest), a campaign to replant many of the lost trees that were destroyed in recent fires throughout the park. With the amount of registered runners, the event was able to donate more than a thousand trees to help the park’s reforestation.

“I would like to sincerely congratulate each runner for making this year’s edition of the Patagonian International Marathon one to remember, and the inclusion of almost a 1,000 runners has also greatly aided in the park’s restoration,” said Stjepan Pavicic, the event’s race director. “We thank all participants, volunteers, and staff for their hard work and dedication in making this event realizable, and an additional heartfelt thank you to all the events sponsors, including Caja Los Andes, and CONAF for permitting the event, as it would not have been possible without both their participation and also their dedication to the region’s development.”

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About the Organization:

Since its inception in 2002, NIGSA has valued unique expeditions that have never been done before. Its in-depth geographical knowledge of Southern Patagonia allows NIGSA not only to craft new ways of discovering and promoting Patagonia but also to further the conservation of and the sustainability within the region.

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