This cheating scandal somehow got weirder.
In the annals of way you can cheat during an ultra marathon the absolute top of the list has to be TAKING A CAR AND DRIVING PART OF THE RACE. Scotland’s Joasia Zakrzewski did just that, and now she’s being given a 12-month suspension for the ride.
The incident occurred at the 2023 GB Ultras Manchester to Liverpool, a 50 mile race that took place back in April. Zakrzewski would finish third, taking home the trophy — only for it to revealed later that she drove 2.5 miles of the course in a car before continuing to run.
It’s here things got pretty weird. Zakrzewski claims she owned up to the car ride to race officials, who she claims told her to finish “in an non-compeditive way.” That would almost make sense had Zakrzewski not FINISHED IN THIRD PLACE, STOOD ON THE PODIUM, ACCEPTED THE TROPHY, THEN REFUSED TO RETURN IT WHEN ASKED.
The excused kept going from there, as the runner claimed she was suffering from “brain fog” on the day of the race, which caused her to forget about the ride. The panel deciding on her suspension wasn’t buying it.
“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. 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.”
This has to be one of the weirdest cheating attempts of all time. All Zakrzewski had to do was not accept a trophy and she wouldn’t have been banned. Now it could spell the end to the 47-year-old’s competitive career.
Let this be a lesson to any runner out there: It’s frowned upon to take a car.