The first edition of the Great Desert Race held in Puerto Peñasco Oct. 22nd – 23rd was a resounding success! The event welcomed 285 competitors from 10 different countries, running over dunes, marshes, and sacred lands before reaching the finish located at Playa San Jorge just east of the city.
The Grand Desert of Altar, nestled into this corner of the Sea of Cortez, set the background for paths ultra-marathoners and fans crossed as they made their way through the 75, 50, 25, or 10K categories. Runners impressively faced the various ecosystems of the desert region.
Sonora Governor Alfonso Durazo, accompanied by Federal Tourism Secretary Miguel Torruco Marqués, Sonora Tourism Secretary Celida López, and Puerto Peñasco Mayor Jorge Pivac, awarded top prizes to runners of this magnificent race. Given its transcendence and success, this was the first but certainly not the last of the Great Desert Race.
Competition began on Saturday, Oct. 22nd at Sierra Pinta. There, runners from across Mexico as well as from Brazil, Guatemala, Spain, the U.S. and Argentina, among other nations, had their first glimpse at this Sonoran port.
Runners set off in the early morning to begin their journey over the sacred lands of the Tohono O’odham, venturing into the heart of the Sonoran Desert, across coastal as well as mountainous routes. By night, participants enjoyed camping under the brilliant starry sky, which can only be fully appreciated in this hidden spot on the Sea of Cortez.
Among top winners, stand-outs included Molly Housman and Sofia Berwin (Brazil), Pablo Gil, José Miguel Romero, Karina Carsolio, Nelly Pineda, Javier Carvallo, Julio Cesar Félix, Hilda Martínez, María del Rosario Arcadia, Ricardo Maldonado, Renata Jaime (Puerto Peñasco), Erick Hernández and Pavel Maldonado, among dozens of runners who achieved best times upon reaching the finish line.
This magnificent race, organized by Grupo Sabino and Grupo Expansión, promoted by the Sonora Tourism Office and the Puerto Peñasco Convention and Visitors Bureau with support of the local government, was projected nationally and internationally as one of the most impressive races of its kind given the varied landscapes and ecosystems showcased. It was so well received that participants are already looking forward to its 2nd run!