Puerto Rican victory in Como! Orocoveno Alexander Torres wins the San Blas Half Marathon
Como. Orocoveño Alexander Torres made history this Sunday in the 61st edition with a time of 1:03.59. San Blas Half MarathonTo become the first Puerto Rican to win the event on its international stage.
The first three editions of the race were with local athletes and over a distance of five kilometers. Later, it was opened to international brokers. A Puerto Rican has not won since 1966.
“First of all, I’m happy. It’s been my dream since childhood. Thanks to my coach (Ricardo Mendoza Canulas). He’s the one who made me where I am. We’re training for the marathon and that gives me confidence.”Torres said after his victory.
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“Today is history. This will mean me and all of Puerto Rico. I know Puerto Rico expected that and supported me all the way. We did it,” he added.
Torres clocked 1:04.33 to beat runner-up Joseph Banga of Tanzania. Kenya’s Dominic Korir came in third with 1:07.15.
For Puerto Rico, this is the first victory in the international editions and the second time the island is represented in the ‘Top 3’.. In 1982, Hector “Papo” Díaz of Villapeno finished second with a time of 1:04.42, the best record for a Puerto Rican in the Comanán event to date.
“This year I came underweight. Last year I ran 140 lbs. This time I ran 133. I paid little attention. Last year I put too much pressure on myself. I thought nothing of it. I set off at the allotted pace. I kept going out with them (Africans) and studying. I saw that I could be with them.”Torres said.
Read more | The Amazing Story of Alexander Torres: He Was Hit by a Car, Now the Most Prominent Long-Distance Runner in the Country
Torres ran in a pack of seven riders, six of whom were African. The peloton disintegrated until Torres was alone at kilometer 15, home to the famous El Ajoquillo slope. Torres pushed up and took off favorably.
He took the lead in the descent after El Ajoquillo, who ran at full speed, or as they say in athletics ‘out of the blue’, to avoid the hunting corir.
“After kilometer 9 I started to push and they answered everything for me. We came to Ajoquillo; climbing is my strength, I was able to gain a few meters. From then on, I had a big advantage. Going down I did one kilometer in 2:34, I was so fast Didn’t. I practiced it well and jumped without fear,” he said.
Torres finished fifth in the 2022 edition of San Blas with a time of 1:05.21. At the time, he bested three Africans out of seven African runners who participated.
On the other hand, Paola Figueroa became the first Puerto Rican woman to cross the finish line with a time of 1:21:01.
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