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Marisa Lizak wins Desert Solstice outright, sets age group record

Lizak ran 238.32 kilometres in 24 hours, setting a new US F40-44 record

The Desert Solstice 24-Hour and 100 Mile Track Invitational in Phoenix, Arizona is the very definition of endurance. Held on the 400m oval track at Phoenix, Arizona’s Central High School, it’s an event designed for the purpose of breaking records. This year Marisa Lizak of Marina Del Ray, California, not only won outright, with with 148.08 miles (238.32 kilometres, or 595 laps), setting a new personal best of more than 11 miles over 24 hours, but she set a new American F40-44 age-group record, to boot. Lizak is coached by Camille Herron, who set a new 24-hour world record and an American 100-mile record last year at this event.

Only 30 of the top American endurance runners are invited, and in order to qualify, runners must have run at least 124 miles (198.4K) in 24 hours, or 100 miles in under 17:30. The race is a qualifier for the 24-hour national team. 

With a little more than an hour left in the race, Lizak had been leading for some time, and she finished strong. Rolfe Schmidt of Fayetteville, Arkansas finished second (and first male), with 145.8 miles (234.65K). Oswaldo Lopez of San Francisco, who won the 2011 Badwalter Ultramarathon, was third (and second male), with 141.03 miles (227.12K). (Last year Lopez set the Mexican 24-hour record here with 139.6 miles.) Schmidt and Lopez are both 47.

Yvonne Naughton of La Conner, Washington was second female (and fourth overall), with 117.81 miles (189.60K). Naughton is 42. Adele Salt of Leduc, Alta., 46, was third female (and fifth overall) with 116.13 miles (186.90K). Zachary Szablewski of Issaquah, Washington was third male, with 115.36 miles (185.65K).

RELATED: Camille Herron breaks 24-hour WR and US 100-mile record at Desert Solstice


Records list

According to the race site, 13 world records and 74 American records had been set at this event, which is held on the 400m track at prior to this year’s event.

Zach Bitter of Phoenix broke his own US 100K record by 19 minutes, completing that distance in 6:39:09.

Laurie Dymond broke Connie Gardner’s US 50K record in the F50 age group, completing that distance in 4:30:56.

Meghan Laws of Cool, California broke Sandra Kiddy’s world 50K record in the F55 age group, completing that distance in 3:56:52. She also set a new US F55 track 100K record, in 8:41:21, and a new US F55 50-mile record, in 6:44:50.

Results are unofficial.

View full results here.