Crowd favourite Jasmin Paris has been eliminated from the 2023 Barkley Marathons after four loops. The British ultrarunner needed to complete loop four in 12 hours and 20 minutes to stay in the race and become, potentially, the first woman to finish the Barkley Marathons, but she fell short of the 48-hour cutoff time to begin the fifth loop. Paris is only the second woman ever to attempt a fourth loop; the first was Sue Johnston of Vermont, in 2001.
— Keith (@keithdunn) March 16, 2023
Paris returned to camp on Thursday at 2:30 p.m. after a 16-hour fourth loop. She reportedly had gotten as far as the prison by time her 48 hours was up, and by the time she returned to camp, she was well beyond it. (She also managed to find only nine of 16 books on the course.)
Paris was racing the Barkley for the second time, improving on her 2022 fun run (which involves three laps in under 40 hours, but does not allow an attempted fourth lap).
The Barkley Marathons is five loops of a 20+ mile course (distances vary) featuring thousands of metres of elevation gain, and runners only have about 12 hours to complete each loop to finish within the 60-hour time limit. Paris completed her first loop in 8:36:57 and loop two (which is run in the opposite direction to the first) in 12:36:10.
Paris reportedly laboured on the third loop, returning to camp nearly two hours slower than her previous loop (14:27:39). Her tough third loop left her with her back against the wall, and she needed to complete the final two loops in under 25 hours to finish the Barkley.
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In 2019, Paris jumped to world attention on the ultra scene when she smashed the overall course record at Britain’s Montane Spine Race, finishing in 83 hours, 12 minutes, 23 seconds–while also pumping breastmilk for her infant daughter. Paris was challenged by Laz Lake to run the Barkley after Lake said he thinks Paris might be the only woman who could possibly finish the race.
Damian Hall dropped out during loop 5, having become lost on the course, returned to camp with no book pages shortly after Paris’s arrival and was tapped out by the bugler.