Chen becomes first Asian to complete 700km Arctic race
By Joseph Yeh, The China PostTAIPEI, Taiwan -- Taiwanese ultramarathon runner Tommy Chen (陳彥博) completed a 700km ultramarathon in Canada Thursday, making him the first Asian to finish the race held in the nation's freezing Arctic Yukon territory.
February 16, 2013, 12:04 am TWN
Chen finished fifth overall and third place among the 25 competitors who chose to conduct the challenge on foot in the Yukon Arctic Ultra, often described as the toughest ultramarathon in the world.
Chen completed the race Thursday afternoon as he arrived in Dawson City, the last stop of the grueling competition. Temperatures ranged between minus 20 C and minus 30 C.
Carrying the Republic of China's national flag, a trademark of his during marathons to proclaim his heritage, Chen reached the finishing line with tears in his eyes, Chen's agent told Taiwanese media.
The freezing temperature and a bad cold almost prevented Chen from finishing the race. But he persevered and completed the competition, his agent said.
A total of 29 runners joined the race, which started on Feb. 3 in Whitehorse, Yukon. Participants were given the choice to complete the race either by mountain bike, via cross-country skiing or on foot.
Only an average of 30 percent participants completed the challenge, Chen's agent said.
The just-concluded challenge was part of Chen's goal, which he began in 2009, to finish eight races on all seven continents within five years.
The Taipei-native has one more race to go: a 520km, nine-day long-distance race in Australia to be held in May.
Taiwanese ultramarathon runner Tommy Chen (陳彥博) holds the Republic of China's national flag in Dawson City, Yukon, Thursday, Feb. 14. Chen completed a 700km ultramarathon in Canada ...