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"you don't just take part in a Six Day event, you join a family"

Joseph "nutcase" Maartens (SA Six Day Circuit Race)

Nächster Ultramarathon

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  • Jesper verlässt Australien

    Jespers Tagebucheintrag zum letzten Tag Down Under:

    2005.02.11 Perth; "Perth Oval" (cricket stadium) at crossing of Highway 51 and Highway 72, central Perth - Perth; City Beach, at the end of Highway 72: Indian Ocean coast . (Route: Highway 72 until its finish at Floreat/City Beach)
    12km, 1:06:49h. Excl. food, water, road-finding, toilet etc. stops.
    Total 17.875km.
    Start: 11:35am. Finish: 12:56pm. Time GMT + 8 hours
    +28c, half overcast, humid & light wind at start. Same at finish.

    The finish points of the Australian part of the world run :-)

    .. Getting the running shoes slightly wet in a wave of the Indian Ocean concludes more than 3 months and 4000km of running across Australia.
    - A run which has brought numerous positive experiences; and highest amongst them the hospitality, friendship and enthusiasm towards the world run by the many people I met here !

    Australia certainly have an amazing nature - crossing the huge barren Nullabor, running up the delightful green Snowy Mountains, and down through the subtropical rainforests, and the 40c hot dusty gold fields of west Australia - but the straightforwardness and helpful nature of the people in Australia is in my view by far the highest wealth of this country. People with such human resource has much to be proud of !!

    Especially in East and South Australia I became positively spoiled with friendship and volunteer crews, helping out from Sydney all the way to Melbourne and beyond, passing me from one crew to the next.

    In the Nullabor I had the little bit horrifying aspect of running the desert unsupported - yet two extraordinary teams decided to show up: the "desert experts" by John Pav and family, and Mr. Peter Gray who out of enthusiasm and understanding of the challenge at hand crewed for almost 1 month of not so easy desert crossing. An effort, that probably will continue to amaze me for the rest of the run.

    Indeed there are many to thank for the opportunity they gave me to succeed in this part of the world run. I trust that Phil Essam, vice pres. of the Australian Ultra runners Association, will know to forward my thanks :-)

    Phil has been the main coordinator of the Australian part, so you can probably guess who made all the networking to make this outstanding experience possible.. !!

    A story that has been almost fairy-tale comes to mind:

    - while running in Siberia, during the 7months of (very) hard running, I was often in contact with Phil, planning the Australian run via the mobile phone. At a point in Eastern Siberia things looked grim: the runner that had been my company all the way from Greenwich, London, Alexander Korotkov, had broken down due to running conditions beyond words that I know. I was hanging in there by, probably, the last grip at a strange surreal level of exhaustion. Planning for an aussie part of the run seemed very far fetched.

    Since the start, 11 000km earlier, we had planned that I should try be in Colac, just West of Melbourne, the 21. November in order to participate in the 19.th. edition of the International Australian 6 day Race as part of my run from Sydney to Perth. A race which that year also was Australian championships.

    And for some reason, out there on a Siberian gravel road, dusty, hungry and long since washed, I decided that I wanted to be there, to race those guys, to meet "the best in the game" and mainly: to be part of that party and friendship which races on the ultra distance tend to be - due to its difficulty !
    In order to do that, I had to keep myself running the last 2500km out to Vladivostock. No cutting of corners.

    The short end of the story is: Phil, Alexander and myself got me motivated to carry on, reach Vladivostock, run through a typhoon in Japan and finally run into Colac the 20. November.

    - What happened there still amazes me: after 3 days of racing I took the lead and stayed there until the finish, getting the first place and a national record (754km) as result. And a good bit of finance as well, to go into the budget that the sponsors and I try to keep together.

    Sometimes the run has been that stunning way: that things work out far beyond what I could imagine.

    Australia has certainly been that way !

    Mehr unter http://www.worldrun.org

    (16.02.2005, Steppenhahn)

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