Nepali ultra-runner Mira Rai won the Mont Blanc Skyrunner World Series in Chamonix Mont-Blanc Valley, France on Saturday.
Rai finished the race — 82km in distance with upto 6,000m altitude — in 12 hours, 32 minutes and 12 seconds to win the women’s overall section gold medal in the second edition of the competition. “After my birthday, this is the day of my life,” Rai told trails-endurance.com after winning the race. “And I thank everyone for supporting me as I ran for my country,” she added.
Rai, who hails from Bhojpur and was a member of PLA for two years during Maoist insurgency, was a runaway leader as she left her opponents way back finishing the race almost 21 minutes. She also broke the course record, beating previous edition’s 12:38:49 set by Sweden’s Tina-Emelie Forsberg.
Then 15-year-old, Rai was disqualified during verification by the UN and she resorted to sports. A karate black belt holder, Rai later entered the field of ultra running.
Anna Comet Pascua of Spain came second in 12:54:55, while USA’s Hilary Allen was third in 13:11:40. This is the sixth race Rai participated in 2015, winning four of them.
Her last victory was at the Buffalo Stampede Skyrunning in Australia in April. The race — with its 82km and 6000 metres of vertical — has been recognised as one of the most technical trail races in France.