What's become known as the world's largest annual party, the Carnival in Rio de Janeiro, got off to an early start this year with a running race along the beaches at Ipanema and Copacabana.
GV PAN Participants waiting for the start of the race
GV Race competitors limbering up before the race
GV PAN Competitors, including No. 650, British runner Chris Stewart, before the start of the race (2 shots)
GV Competitors along the road during the race
GV Runner No. 689 Joao da Mata, leads and wins the race (4 shots)
SV Spectators at finishing line
SV Competitors in fancy dress (2 shots)
SV Winner presented with trophy
GV PAN Crowd applauds as first three competitors acknowledge cheering (2 shots)
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Background: What's become known as the world's largest annual party, the Carnival in Rio de Janeiro, got off to an early start this year with a running race along the beaches at Ipanema and Copacabana. As the runners lined up for the start of the race, many of them were in the fancy dress that is a highlight of the Rio Carnival. Some of the runners were taking the race seriously though--among them, British long-distance athlete, Chris Stewart, at 35, one of the country's top marathon runners. The race was dominated throughout by the Brazilian Joao Da Mata from Minas Gerais. He took the lead early in the race and held it to the finish. Spectators on bicycles and cars followed the athletes along the course and a samba band was waiting to greet them as they crossed the finishing line.