Mexican Woman Wearing Long Skirt and Rubber Sandals Wins 50 Km Ultramarathon


Mexican woman, María Lorena Ramírez, a native Rarámuri, who have no professional training or even basic gear, not only managed to finish a 50 km race, but actually won ultramarathont. And she did it wearing a traditional long skirt and sandals made of recycled tire rubber.

High quality running shoes, compression socks, Lycra suits, energy drinks, all these are considered essential by most runners participating in an ultramarathon, but they were of no importance to 22-year-old María Lorena Ramírez, a sheep herder from Chihuahua, Mexico, who showed up at the starting line of a women’s ultramarathon in Puebla in traditional clothing and equipped with just a bottle of water and a handkerchief. She stood out like a sore thumb among the 500 or so other runners from 12 countries around the world, but she didn’t seem to care.

The Rarámuri or Tarahumara natives are famous for being the best runners in Mexico, and Ramírez is considered one of the fastest long-distance runners in her community, but I don’t think anyone actually expected her to win, at least not dressed in a skirt and wearing rubber sandals. But after seven hours and three minutes, the unthinkable happened, as the 22-year-old was the first to cross the finish line, taking home both the bragging rights and a 6,000 pesos ($320) cash prize.

“She carried no special accessories,” said race organizer Orlando Jiménez. “She didn’t bring any gel, nor energy sweets, walking stick, glasses or those very expensive running shoes that everyone wears to run in the mountains. Just a bottle of water, her hat and a kerchief.”

It’s important to note that María Lorena Ramírez had undergone no professional training for the 50-km race, apart from the 10-15 kilometers she walks each day while herding her sheep.

Interestingly, winning the Cerro Rojo Ultramarathon, in Puebla, central Mexico, on April 29, was not María’s first notable achievement. Last year she came second in the 100-kilometer category of the Caballo Blanco ultramarathon, in Chihuahua.


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