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Bonkers friend takes part in Marathon des Sables

Written by Fiona April 07 2011

I am lucky enough to know some really mad outdoorsy folk! And while they are totally bonkers most of them are also very lovely people, too. What always strikes me is how these mostly very intelligent people talk in such a rational way about their extreme events. They will tell you all about the bonker-ness of their next challenge in such a plausible and straightforward manner that you almost imagine yourself taking part, too. I have been drawn into entering some slightly bonkers events, but never will I contemplate what friend and former member of the Glasgow Triathlon Club (he’s moved to America with his family and work) Mr Bionic is currently up to in the Sahara!

Just now, Mr Bionic is on day four or five of the Marathon des Sables. For those that don’t know your bonkers ultra races, this is a biggie. The event takes particpants (some 950 entered in 2011) across  151 miles (243km) of the Sahara Desert in Morocco, over six days.

This race is very hot, very sandy and has a high drop-out rate.

Mr Bionic has always been known in our club for taking on extreme events, and doing very well in them. After four days, he sits around 140th out of the 850-or-so who started the race.

His update on Facebook, via his wife in America, states:

“David wanted me to up date all of you who have been emailing him in the Sahara as he can only write one email a day. Now finished day 3 and is in 143 position out of 850 who started. Has run through stunning sand dunes, river beds, and walled villages accompanied by camels and goats in 38C heat.Calf muscle is hurting. Has sand in eyes, ears and nose, blue toenails and sore shoulders. Will be taking painkillers tomorrow during the 52 mile day 4! Enjoying reading all your messages. Mad dogs and Englishmen and all that (though David would claim he’s Welsh)!”

I wish him lots of luck – and I can’t wait for him to write a guest blog about his experience when he returns. Even if the rest of his body is broken I’m sure he’ll manage to use one finger on his right hand to type a post for me!

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