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The Globe and Mail

Marathon runner admits taking bus to finish line, stripped of medal

Thousands of runners participate in the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on Oct. 9, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois.

Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images/Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Rob Sloan claimed to have finished third in the Kielder Marathon near London on Sunday, but it was later discovered he had travelled nearly 10 kilometres by bus before re-entering the race near the finish line, the Daily Mail reported Wednesday.

After getting off the bus, Sloan hid behind a tree until other competitors came into view and rejoined the race, crossing the finishing line in two hours, 51 minutes, 1 second to secure third place.

He told a TV crew that he had given the race everything he could. He initially denied claims that he had cheated, calling them "laughable," but later admitted that he had cheated.

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Part of his problem was that he boarded a bus that was meant for marathon spectators, so many presumably would have recognized him. Also, Olympic star and race organizer Steve Cram told the Daily Mail, "He was the only runner in the whole of the race who ran the second half of the race quicker than the first half."

Sloan, a former Army mechanic, was stripped of his medal, disqualified from the race and apparently will be the subject of a probe by his running club, the Sunderland Harriers.

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