Posted by: Joe English | May 30, 2008

Races: Nepalese farmer wins third Mt. Everest Marathon title

Everest MarathonKATHMANDU – A Nepalese runner Thursday won the world’s highest marathon for the third consecutive year, officials said. Dip Kumar Rai, a farmer by profession, finished the 42 kilometre distance in 3 hours 53 minutes and 14 seconds to claim the title for the third consecutive year.

The race started near Khumbhu icefall at an altitude of 5,400 metres near the Everest base camp and ended in the town of Namchebazar 2,000 metres below after passing through some of Nepal’s most spectacular scenery.

Another Nepalese runner Phurba Tamang came second after completing the distance in 3 hours 58 minutes.

Japanese runner Hesikowa Hiroki was the first among international participants completing the race in 5 hours and 14 seconds.

Altogether 136 participants from 17 countries took part in the race.

The marathon is held on May 29 each year to commemorate the first ascent of Mt Everest by Tenzing Norgey Sherpa and Sir Edmund Hillary in 1953.

The marathon passes through the traditional route to Everest base camp pioneered by Norgey and Hillary in 1953, the organisers said.

The run is considered extremely difficult due to the terrain as well as the thin mountain air and lack of oxygen due to the high altitude.

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