Across the Divide on the BBC

Possibly the hardest race in the world?   The Namibia Ultra Marathon wows BBC viewers

Blue Peter today BBC 1 16.35 featuring the Namibia Ultra Marathon – the Critics choice in the Sunday Times! – if you missed it or fancy seeing it again you can watch it here

Today, Wed 6 May, BBC 1 Blue Peter 16.35

Yes today is the day that Blue Peter are featuring the Namibia 24 hour Ultra Marathon.   Blue Peter presenter, Helen Skelton ran the race and finished a very impressive 8th out of a field of 20 runners with only 12 finishing.  16.35 – BBC 1 don’t miss it.

So set your Sky Plus or watch on BBCi Player

News just in Namibia 24-hr Ultra Marathon completed…..

We’ve just heard from the Namibia 24-hr Ultra Marathon race director Steve Clark, that everyone is now back at Swakopmund.  Steve had said that the Namibia race was very tough with temperatures getting up to 42 ºc.    Winner Darren Roberts was very surprised and shocked to win it and once it had sunk in he was delighted – Tom Adams very nearly caught Darren on the finish line to make it a nail-biting finish.

Namibia 24-hr Ultra Marathon Race results are as follows:

1st Place – Darren Roberts 20 hr 28

2nd Place – Tom Adams 20 hr 29

3rd Place – Tom Maguire 21 hr 05

4th Place – Emma Rogan 21 hr 27 – First female to complete the Namibia 24-hr ultra marathon

5th Place – Jerry Haywood 22 hr 30

6th Place – Nick Tidbull 23 hr 17

7th Place – Nicholas Wright 23 hr 45

8th Place – Helen Skelton 23 hr 50 – BBC Blue Peter presenter

9th Place – Adrian Crossley, Stuart Moore, Kellie Power & Michael Shakesheff 25.07 – just finished out of the 24-hour deadline but all completed the course and have secured their 9th places.   They all held hands as they crossed.

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Ultra Runners arrive in Namibia…

Our team of runners have arrived in Namibia ahead of the 24-hour marathon on Saturday.   Over 20 runners will be taking part in this extreme event covering 126km in 24-hours.  The blog will be updated on Saturday for more news on the race and how everyone is doing……

Namibia Ultra runners about to set off…..

It’s only a few days until our team of runners set off on the ultimate endurance test in the Namibian Desert. The Namibia 24-hour ultra marathon is a race over 126km in 24-hours, all contestants will be completely self reliant from the start to finish and will need to carry all their own food and equipment on their backs. For 2009 we have a Blue Peter presenter Helen Skelton and a team from Men’s Fitness magazine joining us. The Namibia 24 hour Ultra Marathon is rapidly becoming known as the ultimate endurance test for distance runners. Our route will take you into the northern Namib Desert, the oldest desert in the world and the largest and most remote National Park in Africa. If the landscape does not help to keep mind and soul occupied, the ostrich and springbuck you will pass along the way should bring your thoughts into focus.

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Men’s Fitness join us on the Namibia Ultra Training Weekend

We are delighted that Men’s Fitness are joining us on the Namibia Ultra Marathon coming up in April. Team Men’s Fitness, as they are known, came down to Somerset last weekend to take part in our training weekend. We had previous runners of the race come along, lots of lengthy runs and the event Doctor on hand to give advice on dehydration. It was a great weekend and you can find out more how the team got on on their blog.

Namibia 24hour Ultra 2008 – Have you got what it takes?

Namibia Ultra Marathon
April see’s the first running of the Namibia 24Hour Ultra, a 120km race across the worlds oldest desert and most remote national park in Africa with a coastline considered by many to be the most hostile you’ll ever see.

Runners will be completely self reliant for the duration of the race, having to carry their food and equipment. Water stations and medical tents will be provided at 20km intervals along the route. Temperatures are expected to reach 35 degrees c. The route is mainly flat with undulating sections of gravel, sand and rock, but this one will really test your mental strength to the max.

After flying into Windhoek competitors will transfer to Spitzkoppe in the Namib at the spectacular Spitzkoppe desert mountain range. The race starts in the cool of a desert early evening and participants will run through the night with the full moon of the Namib for light and company. Runners will pass by the Klein Spitzkoppe and Trekkoppe into the wastelands of vast Namib gravel plains, until it finally reaches the finish line on the misted Skeleton Coast and the camp on the beach front at Jakkalsputz (Jackal’s Well) where tents will be on hand to crawl straight into.

The Skeleton Coast Park covers 2 million hectares and is one of the most inhospitable and least visited places on earth gaining its name from the large numbers of shipwrecks which can still be found amongst the drifting desert sands. This is a place of real untouched natural beauty and one that should not be missed. If however 120km seems a bit too far there is also a standard 42.2km distance but this is no ordinary marathon.

Training for such an event isn’t going to be easy and focus must be on endurance as opposed to speed, 24 Hours is a long time to be on your feet! If it is the 120km race you’re doing then expect your body to be pushed to its limit and your mind to its max, mental preparation is as important as physical, it’s a given that your mind will be telling you to stop.

If you want to be there too you’ll need to visit the Adventure Racing Website it’s got to be one of the most spectacular ultra marathons on earth.