Marathon des Sables, Stages & Race Reports

April 9 – Race Day 6 – 17.5km

 

Takkourt N'Takouit to Tazzarine


....The final leg

The day started with something different, the tent fairy’s didn’t turn up!

I was in reasonable spirits and had decided that I would just throw caution to the wind and push as hard as I could for as long as I could…..it was only going to hurt for 17km…I could even crawl that if I had to!

 

As we ran out of the bivouac for the last time, the tents still standing, the media helicopter sweep in low, and as usual, sideways.

I decided I had to run my own line, running behind others in the rocky terrain was going to drain me more as I wouldn’t be running in my efficient zone.

 

Things were going really well, I was moving swiftly, probably as fast as day one before the wheels fell off. Having an empty pack at last made a huge difference.

 

I was closing in on the lead Australian, then passed him!

 

He looked in a bad way though I couldn’t leave him like that, that’s not what I’ve been taught, to not help him would not be right.

 

I went back and gave him two of my electrolyte packs and some food….his tank was empty.

 

Only then could I carry on.

 

I was picking up places all the way to the finish, I was have the most brilliant day!

 

The last few km were through a village on bitumen roads – I was moving even quicker now.

 

As I zoomed down the road toward the finish, I came up behind the lead woman.

I decided to not pass, to soak up the feeling of this amazing adventure and just cruise in to the line.

 

I was so happy to finish, to stop, to not have to carry my pack any more – the prospect of a shower buoyed my spirits even more!

Back at the hotel, my fellow Australians were starting to gather, and before I knew it I had an ice cold beer in my hand, courtesy of the fellow I’d helped out that day. He said he wouldn’t have made it without the aid I’d provided – we shook hands, smiled and raised our glasses…the first of a ‘few’.

 

It was a great adventure….and maybe I will do it again some time…you never know.

 

But for now I was proud of myself for not giving in to the pain, and enjoying the tales from my fellow competitors.