'Vertical marathon' draws hundreds of runners from across the world

The Sky Run in Seoul drew 1,500 runners to the competition.

SEOUL, South Korea -- It was a race to the top -- literally!

Hundreds of challenge seekers and those looking for a break from their daily routines participated in the Lotte World Tower International Sky Run Sunday in downtown Seoul.

Runners from all over the world strived to cross the finish line of the longest and highest vertical-running marathon out of nine different international Vertical World Circuit races.

Some 1,500 participants were divided into three groups: elite, individual, and relay. They sprinted up to a total 1,820-foot high, 123-story building with 2,971 stairs.

The Lotte competition has 691 more stairs compared to those of the race at One World Trade Center in New York.

In the end, Suzy Walsham, an elite runner from Australia, said she was happy to have won the woman's race.

“It is super big building, very challenging but also very rewarding to conquer such a building. And amazing view,” she told ABC News.

Piotr Lobodzinski from Poland won the men's race.

During the non-competitive race, distinctive participants such as firefighters, Darth Vader and a dad carrying his baby caught the eyes among general runners.

“It is my bucket list to bring my son to all national parks in South Korea and multiple races off the beaten track like this,” Seong Jun-uk, giving his 16-month-old, Jaemin, a piggyback ride while taking one step at a time, told ABC News.

The proceeds of the application fees, except operational costs, will be donated to a charity foundation for raising children in sports.

The next VWC relay race will be held on May 24 at Tour First in Paris.