2012-02-09 / World

German man wins Empire race again

NEW YORK (AP) — A German runner has won an annual race up 86 flights of stairs at the Empire State Building for a record seventh straight time.

Stuttgart resident Thomas Dold completed the Empire State Building Run- Up on Wednesday in 10 minutes and 28 seconds.

“Well, the good thing is that I’ve done better than all the others,” said the 27-year-old Dold, who completed his last three run-ups in 10 minutes and 10 seconds or less.

He said he didn’t know why the finish was “so exhausting” this year because he’s “ really fit” and compares training techniques with other runners.

Two other men have won the race five times since it began in 1978: American Al Waquie from 1983-87 and Australian Paul Crake from 1999- 2003. Crake remains the record holder with a time of 9 minutes and 33 seconds but has not competed since suffering a devastating bicycle accident in 2006.

Melissa Moon, of Wellington, New Zealand, was this year’s women’s winner in 12 minutes and 39 seconds. The 42-year-old Moon also won the race in 2010.

“You can’t start too fast too soon in a race like this,” Moon said. “I knew I had it when I got to the 70th floor and I could no longer hear them breathing behind me.”

Athletes from around the world took part in the grueling even-for-the-elite-athletes trek from the lobby to the observation deck, floor by floor, up 1,576 steps.

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