Ashprihanal Aalto Wins the 23rd Sri Chinmoy 3100 Mile Race
Ashprihanal Aalto is ready to go to sleep.
The 48-year-old Finn just won this year’s Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race. He crossed a duct-tape ribbon Friday after running more than 60 miles on each of 48 consecutive days around the same half-mile course in the Jamaica Hills neighborhood of Queens, N.Y.
This is Mr. Aalto’s 15th time completing one of the hardest footraces in the world, which requires runners to cover 3,100 miles over 52 days. It is often compared with ultra-endeavors like the 6633 Arctic Ultra that crosses the Arctic Circle and the Badwater Ultramarathon in Death Valley. The concrete sidewalk course wraps around one block that is home to Thomas A. Edison Career and Technical High School and its baseball field, with a view of Grand Central Parkway.
Guru Sri Chinmoy, an Indian athlete and philosopher who died in New York City in 2007, started the run in its current form in 1997.
His goal: to achieve the seemingly impossible—and in the process, transcend the limitations of the mind through meditation and persistence.
Not to mention, New York City’s summer heat, exhaust from nearby traffic and crowds of children walking to school.
Mr. Aalto isn’t the only one ready for a nap. The race relies on dozens of helpers and volunteers who work around the clock.
Hometown friends, co-workers and fellow disciples of Mr. Chinmoy, sleep very little for the month and a half. They spend all day on chores, including fixing the runners’ shoes and making tea and food for the eight runners participating this year who consume up to 110,000 calories a day total.
“You don’t want to have to come through here wondering what to eat,” said race director Rupantar LaRusso.
“I’m very happy,” Mr. Aalto said, who has won the race eight times now. “I can go do other things, rather than run, run, run.”
posted Tuesday August 6th
by Acacia Coronado