Mexican politician disqualified from marathon

8th October 2007, Comments 0 comments

8 October 2007, Berlin (dpa) - A Mexican politician who came first among those aged 55 and over at last week's Berlin marathon has been disqualified after organizers found irregularities with his time.

8 October 2007

Berlin (dpa) - A Mexican politician who came first among those aged 55 and over at last week's Berlin marathon has been disqualified after organizers found irregularities with his time.

Roberto Madrazo, a candidate for the Institutional Revolutionary Party in the 2006 presidential election, finished the 42-kilometre course in an impressive two hours, 41 minutes and 12 seconds.

His time, just 37 minutes slower than the world record set by winner Haile Gebrselassie from Ethiopia, was good enough to give him 146th spot among the more than 40,000 entrants.

But newspapers in Mexico smelled something fishy, noting that his time in the September 30 race was 57 minutes faster than his previous best over the distance.

Madrazo raised his arms and smiled into the camera when he crossed the finishing line, looking remarkably relaxed and barely sweating. He was wearing a red track-suit jacket, while other runners wore thin vests that stuck to their bodies.

Organizers reexamined his run from data provided by microchips fitted to the shoes of each runner to record their arrival at five-kilometre intervals along the course.

Madrazo, 55, took 25 minutes for each of the first 5-kilometre stages, but there was no record of him crossing the 25th and 30-kilometre markers. He resurfaced again at the next control point, just a short distance from the finish.

His chip showed he took just 21 minutes from the 20-kilometre to 35-kilometre markers, which are just a few hundreds metres apart and linked by a short-cut that is not part of the marathon course.

Organizers did not accuse Madrazo of taking the shorter route, but confirmed Monday that they had disqualified him because there was something wrong with his time.

DPA

Subject: German news

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