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Tapia also bested the women’s winner to nearly double his prize money in the battle-of-the-sexes “Equalizer Challenge”.

Female elites started the race ahead but Tapia caught the leading woman, Monicah Ngige () who was also making her debut at the distance, in the final stages.

The race was almost cancelled because of heavy rain but the hostile conditions (6–8ºC) didn’t stop hundreds of athletes running along the shores of Lake Maggiore in what is called “The Most Panoramic Course in Italy”. More than 3000 runners from Europe, Asia and South America came to participate in one of the four races offered.

The Marathon joined in with the festivities of the important traditional “Calaveras Festival” (Skulls’ Festival), an event dating from pre-hispanic times to honour and venerate loved ones who have passed away.

1000m World and Olympic champion Almaz Ayana won her debut half marathon.

Entering the final kilometre any of five men could have won and all five went under the hour with another four under 61 minutes.

In this first international edition of the race he improved the course record by nearly 3.5 minutes.

Leading local runner Avinesh Sable, in fourth, ran a national record.

A large, enthusiastic crowd lining the finish line erupted as Daniel Tapia became the first-ever Monterey County native to win the 15-year-old event.

Tapia grew up in nearby Prunedale and ran a personal best to beat runner-up Futsum Zienasellassie, a six-time All-American at Northern Arizona University, in his debut half marathon.

The Marathon was made possible due to the participation of 1200 volunteers helping as paramedics, with hydration and animation, or as traffic marshals, etc.

All the waste material generated by the race is separated and composted or recycled where possible.

The women’s race still had four in contention at 23km: Helah Kiprop, Tanzanian Failuna Matanga and the Ethiopian pair of Degitu Azimeraw and Dibabe Kuma.