A MARTAHON runner is gaining attention for winning races in battered SANDALS… rather than the high-tech shoes worn by his competitors.
Ethiopian runner Amogne Sendeku Alelgn has won two marathons recently wearing his blue plastic sandals.
The runner teams the sandals with socks in what is usually seen as the ultimate fashion faux pas.
But he has not put a foot wrong in his recent races.
Alelgn crossed the line first in the Songshan Shaolin International Marathon held in Eastern China‘s Henan Province.
And before that, he finished first in the Jingyuan International Marathon in North-Western China’s Gansu Province.
Chinese athletics fans were impressed that Alelgn could win without modern running shoes.
One anonymous fan wrote: “The African runner is truly talented.
“Compared to the other competitors with much better running equipment, his sandals seem to be a fair statement of his true ability.
“[He’s] telling the world that a good runner can win without any outside assistance.”
Some even thought the sandals must give him some magical help, with one writing: “It may sound silly to ask…
“But I wonder whether the sandals can actually help the runner to boost his stamina?”
Alelgn himself told Chinese media that his shoes held no such power.
Instead, the Ethiopian star modestly credited his successes to good, old-fashioned “good luck”.