Man wins half marathon but is disqualified for accidently running the wrong race

A man who came first in a half marathon has been disqualified after accidently running the wrong race.

Omar Ahmed had signed up for the Bristol 10K as part of the Great Bristol Run on Sunday, but ended up storming to victory in the 22 kilometre half marathon instead.

The two races were being held at the same time and shared the same route for the initial stages.

Omar made the wrong turn at the point where both routes diverged, and managed to run the longer course in a staggering 63 minutes.

He had entered the 10k race as an elite runner, according to the Great Run Company. The organisers added that there was no choice but to "unfortunately" disqualify him from the half marathon as he hadn't officially entered it.

They said that despite his "impressive performance" an investigation was launched following a number of complaints from other athletes.

Paul Foster, the chief executive of the Great Run Company, said: "Rules are rules and in this case, they say we have to disqualify Omar.

"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."

Obviously, there was one benefactor from Omar's misfortune.

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With a race time of 67 minutes, Chris Thompson of Aldershot, Farnham and District Athletics Club was elevated from second to first place.

It is unlikely that this kind of mix up will ever happen again. Usually, the Bristol 10k is held in spring whereas the half marathon takes place at the end of summer.

The events were only merged together this weekend as both races were cancelled last year during the height of the pandemic, hence it ought to be easier for Omar to stay on track in 2022.

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