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Bristol 10K runner disqualified after accidentally winning half-marathon

Athletes compete in the Cape Town Marathon, South Africa, 15 September 2019. The 42.2km Cape Town Marathon is a Gold Label International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) event. EPA-EFE/NIC BOTHMA

Sept 20 (Reuters) - When Omar Ahmed made a wrong turn in the 10K event of the Great Bristol Run, little did he know that he would run an extra 12km to win the half marathon and then get disqualified.

The two courses diverged at one point and Ahmed, who entered the 10K as an elite runner, went the wrong way to finish the half-marathon with a time of 1:03:08 — nearly five minutes ahead of the competition.

“Rules are rules and in this case they say we have to disqualify Omar,” Paul Foster, chief executive of The Great Run Company, was quoted as saying by the BBC.

“We salute his performance and he has been invited to take part in next week’s Great Manchester Run as an elite athlete. Of course, we also look forward to welcoming him back to Bristol for 2022’s Great Bristol Run.”

As a result, Chris Thompson who finished with a time of 1:07:53 was adjudged the winner of Sunday’s race.

The 10K and half marathon are usually held in different months. Both races were cancelled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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