70 Year-Old Woman Finishes 100-Mile Race 6 SECONDS Before The Cutoff - Sets New Record!

July 1, 2015

With just six seconds left before the 30-hour cutoff time in the 100.2 mile race on Sunday, Gunhild Swanson, 70, became the oldest woman to complete the course.

70 year old finishes 100 mile race
Credit: ERIN STROUT

The Western States Endurance Run is the world's oldest 100-mile race - and among its toughest. Runners climb more than 18,000 feet and descend nearly 23,000 feet before they reach the finish line.

70 year old woman 100 mile race
Credit: WSER.org

In an interview with IRunFar.com, Swanson described the last mile:

"Two friends, my pacers, another friend, Rob Krar, the winner of this race came down. He wasn't waiting there, but he came down the road, and Tim Twietmeyer. Everybody started yelling at me and telling me what to do and pouring ice water all over me. Then I was told, "You have to run as hard as you possibly can. When you get to the track, you can't let up. Down the hill you're okay, but you have to maintain that pace. You have to go with all you possibly can on the track." I came around and saw the clock. Oh, my gosh."

When she crossed the finish line, onlookers gave her the loudest and longest round of applause of any of the 2015 finishers - including the winner.

Watch the moment below:

"In over 15 years of attending Western States I have never witnessed anything like what transpired on the track shortly before 11 a.m. on Sunday," wrote ultrarunner Andy Jones-Wilkins on the race's Facebook page. "I still have chills 90 minutes later."

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