Monday, July 30, 2012

Dingoes and Camels.

Heading out the Northern Territory last week i wasn't really too sure what to expect while crewing Samantha Gash on her Crossing of the Simpson Desert. I'd figured that i was going to see Sam pushing herself pretty hard and that i was going to be witnessing a pretty impressive feat, however any expectations i had were thoroughly exceeded.

Sam and Clarke cresting yet another dune.
I will never run the Simpson. Quite simply it's too hard. Sam set herself a style in which she wished to complete her crossing (single push, short naps as required) and stuck to it despite the first half of the run being much harder than anticipated (and km for km harder than the majority of races in Australia). After her first night I thought there was no way she was going to be able to finish without a substantial rest but she relentlessly pushed on through exhaustion and some very bad tendonitis to the amazement of the whole crew. I have massive respect for what she achieved last week and if you feel like acknowledging her accomplishment, what better way to do it than by supporting her cause through her site here.

Sam's performance aside, it was a whole lot of fun out in the desert. The crew that Sam had assembled to aid her in her run was awesome. Non-stop jokes, better than expected food and the occasional beer made for really fun times and it must have been hard for Sam to keep her stops as short as she did and not stick around for the constant shit talking.

New day, same scene. Sam lying out of view on the left power-napping. Everyone else around the fire talking rubbish.
Now back in Melbourne i'm missing the blue skies and sunshine, but looking forward to the getting back into some good training and the races ahead. The niggles i've had since returning to training are starting to get better and i've got some races coming up that i'm very excited about.

First up, at the end of next month i'll be heading to PNG to race the Kokoda Challenge. I have some family history at Kokoda and have always wanted to get over there to race the challenge, and while i'm probably not going to be at my best I can't wait for this experience, however i have to admit that i'm still getting my head around the fact that the record is over 17 hours for 96kms. Mud and hills make for slow going.
Yeah, some hills in there.
Also on the cards is another tilt at Great Ocean Walk 100km. I raced this last year and was having a ball trying to chase down Julian Spence when i had to pull 55km in with an angry left quad. The trails and views are top notch and it's looking like a great field this year so definitely another race to get excited about.

After those two races I might be about done with racing for the year but i have other running plans that i'm probably more excited about than any of my races, but details on those will have to wait for the moment.

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