Dwarfing the marathon, Italian runner Ivan Cudin won the 245.3-kilometer (152.4-mile) historic Spartathlon race on Sept. 27th for a third time, with a time of 22 hours, 29 minutes and 29 seconds.
Cubin, 39, fourth last year, also won in 2010 and 2011 in a race considered one of the most difficult in the world and said to retrace the steps of Pheidippides more than 2500 years ago who ran from Athens to Sparta to seek help in the fight against the Persians at what became the Battle of Marathon.
Finishing second for a second year in a row was Germany’s 30-year-old Florian Reus in 23:57.13 while 33-year-old Andrzej Radzikowski of Poland was third in 25:49.05, Agence France Presse reported.
The first woman across the line for a second year in a row was 40-year-old Szilvia Lubics of Hungary in 26:53.40. She was ninth overall.
The Spartathlon is run over rough tracks, crossing vineyards and olive groves, steep hillsides and, most challenging of all, the 1,200-meter (.75 miles) ascent and descent of Mount Parthenio in the dead of night.
The race started at the Acropolis in Athens on Sept. 26th and ended in Sparta in the south of the country.
The top five finishers:
1. Ivan Cudin (ITA) 22hr 29min 29sec
2. Florian Reus (GER) 23:57.13
3. Andrzej Redzikowski (POL) 25:49.05
4. Marco Bonfiglio (ITA) 26:01.26
5. Dietmar Goebel (GER) 26:15.57