Photo By Sgt. Emmanuele Ramos | The Challenge Cup sits at the feet of the All- Marine Running team during an award ceremony after the 36th Marine Corps Marathon in Arlington, Va., Oct. 30. The Challenge Cup is a healthy competition between U.S. Marines and British Royal Marines that began in 1978.
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QUANTICO, Va. -- Marines from the men’s United States Marine Corps Running Program kept their title as winners of the Challenge Cup besting the British at the 36th Marine Corps Marathon in Arlington, Va., Oct. 30.
The competition began in 1978 and since then become a yearly challenge.
Historically British Royal Marines have won the cup 22 times and the U.S. Marines have won it 11 times, said Col. Steven Peterson, a Marine with the USMC Running Program.
“The past six years though, we have been getting the better of them,” Peterson said. “It has a lot to do with how we train. We have a lot of dedicated runners that made this win possible.”
The team with the lowest average time wins not only the cup, but bragging rights for the entire year.
The Marine Corps Running program finished with a combined average of 2 hours, 35 minutes, 42 seconds.
“It was a great feeling crossing that finish line,” 2nd Lt. William Prom, a Marine with the USMC Running Program, said. “We have a great team out here today and we came ready to win.”
Prom was their fastest runner finishing with a time of 2:29:44, and was also the first Marine to cross the finish line at the marathon.
“He is an outstanding runner,” Joe Puleo, the coach for USMC Running Program. “It’s his first year on the team, and this is also his first marathon. We’re glad to have him on the team.”
The British Royal Marines finished with a combined average of 2:47:09, with Ryan Kestle as their fastest runner finishing in a time of 2:43:42.
With the amount of history between both nations, Puleo said that these types of friendly competitions strengthen the bonds between both services.
“This is more than just a friendly competition,” Puleo said. “We fight side by side with these guys in Afghanistan. This tradition reinforces bonds between us and the British Marines.”
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QUANTICO, VA, US
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