After a relaxing long weekend in Park City enjoying the July 4th parade, fireworks, and burgers, I was digging through emails at work and ran across one from our CTO congratulating one of our colleagues for placing 2nd in the Gobi March Ultramarathon. Whaaaa?? He placed 2nd in THE Gobi March? This amazing individual is Riel Carol based out of Fitzroy Square, London.
The Gobi March is fast becoming a huge event for ultra marathoners the world over. These are the sorts of events that trash the skin on the soles of runners’ feet, make them lose their toenails, and basically wreak havoc on the human body. The race is over 155 miles long, and takes six days. Riel has been training for 14 months and has logged more than 4,000 miles in preparation for the event. “I even managed to enjoy about half an hour of it, so it wasn’t ALL pain,” said Riel.
Riel had one stage win, and four podium finishes throughout the race. Here are his full results:
Day 1 (38 km): 04:17:30 – finished 2nd
Day 2 (40 km): 04:21:53 – finished 4th
Day 3 (40 km): 04:19:29 – finished 2nd
Day 4 (42 km): 05:21:33 – finished 3rd
Day 5 (78 km): 08:50:29 – finished 1st
Day 6 (10 km): 00:43:30 – finished 2nd
Overall time: 27:54:34
As quoted by a UK paper, the Wandsworth Guardian, Riel also said:
“It is not so much the physical side of things that is difficult. It is the mental aspect that is difficult to over come.
“You spend so much time on your own you have to be mentally strong to keep yourself going and get yourself out of bed in the morning.
“It was an amazing feeling to finish and very emotional. You forget the pain and remember the great moments and that is probably why I’d do something like it again.”
Hats off to Riel — amazing achievement! We’ll be cheering for you next year, if you decide to have another go at it.