Taiwanese ultramarathon runner Tommy Chen took second place in the recently concluded 250-kilometer Last Desert 2016 race in Antarctica, to take the crown as champion of the 4 Deserts Race Series this year, making him the first Asian runner to complete the series in one calendar year.
Before the Antarctica race, Chen was on top after finishing the three other races in the series with the highest accumulated score, leading the second- and third-placed runners by four points and seven points, respectively, which made him particularly cautious about the final race.
The Antarctica race presented a daunting physical and psychological challenge to Chen because in addition to suffering serious foot injuries, he had to cope with the severity of weather conditions that can include gale force blizzards and temperatures down to minus 20 degrees Celsius.
Despite the pressure, however, Chen eventually fulfilled his quest of winning the 4 Deserts Race Series title.
The four ultra-marathon races also include the Atacama Crossing in Chile, the Gobi March in China and the Sahara Race in Egypt (which was relocated to the Namib Desert this year).
For each race, participants must cover 250 km in seven days over rough terrain, with only a place in a tent and water provided.
Chen took second in the Sahara Race in Namibia in May and fifth in the Gobi March in China in June before coming first in Chile in October.
Source: Overseas Community Affairs Council