Runner banned for 12 months for using car in race

Ultra-marathon runner Joasia Zakrzewski has been banned for 12 months by UK Athletics for using a car in a race.

Zakrzewski accepted a medal and trophy for finishing third in the 2023 GB Ultras Manchester to Liverpool 50-mile race on 7 April.

Tracking information later showed she travelled by car for about 2.5 miles before continuing the race.

Zakrzewski claimed she told officials she used a car and finished the race “in a non-competitive way”.

“The claimant had collected the trophy at the end of the race, something which she should have not done if she was completing the race on a non-competitive basis,” said an independent disciplinary panel.

“She also did not seek to return the trophy in the week following the race.

“Even if she was suffering from brain fog on the day of the race, she had a week following the race to realise her actions and return the trophy, which she did not do.

“Finally, she posted about the race on social media, and this did not disclose that she had completed the race on a non-competitive basis.”

Zakrzewski, a 47-year-old GP from Dumfries in Scotland, now lives near Sydney in Australia.

In February, at the Taipei Ultramarathon in Taiwan, she won the 48-hour race outright – setting what was at the time a world record distance of 255 miles (411.5 km).

Racing for Great Britain in the IAU World 100km Championships, she won individual silver in 2011 and bronze in 2014 and 2015.

She also represented Team Scotland in the marathon at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. In 2020, aged 44, she won a 24-hour event in Australia with a distance of 236.561km.

She has set a number of records including the Scottish 24-hour record, the British 200k and the Scottish 100 miles record. — Online

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