Jasmin Paris Makes History in Barkley Marathons: First Woman to Finish

British athlete Jasmin Paris makes history as the first woman to conquer the challenging Barkley Marathons, finishing with only 99 seconds left. Learn about her remarkable achievement in this legendary 100-mile ultramarathon.

Jasmin Paris Becomes First Woman to Conquer the Barkley Marathons

In the world of ultrarunning, the Barkley Marathons stands as one of the most challenging and elusive races. On Friday, British athlete Jasmin Paris made history by becoming the first woman to ever complete this grueling 100-mile event, finishing with just 99 seconds to spare before the 60-hour cut-off.

Paris, a 40-year-old veterinarian scientist and mother of two from Edinburgh, had previously attempted the Barkley Marathons in 2022, but was unable to finish the race within the time limit. This year, she proved her mettle, crossing the finish line in an impressive time of 59:58:21, joining just a handful of runners who have successfully conquered the Barkley’s five 20-mile loops and 54,200 feet of elevation gain.

“The Barkley Marathons, created by Gary Cantrell and Karl Henn in 1986, is inspired by the escape of Martin Luther King’s assassin, James Earl Ray, who ran about 12 miles in 54.5 hours from a nearby prison in 1977. Over the years, the ultramarathon has gained a reputation for being one of the most challenging and unforgiving races in the world, with only 20 finishers in its nearly four-decade history.”

Paris’s achievement is particularly remarkable considering her previous success in the Montane Spine Race in Northern England, where she broke the course record by 12 hours in 2019. Her ability to push through the grueling conditions and complete the Barkley Marathons is a testament to her exceptional endurance and determination.

The race’s winner this year was Canada-based Ukrainian Ihor Varys, who clocked in at 58:44:59, cementing his place in the Barkley’s illustrious history.

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