Namibian ultra marathon

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The Namibian 24h Ultra Marathon is a 24-hour ultramarathon that takes the participants through one of the oldest deserts on earth, the Namib Desert. The race is a 126 km, a distance equivalent to three marathons, self-reliant race where participants must carry their own equipment (food, clothes, water, GPS, maps etc. see kit list).

Participants in the gruelling foot race cover 126 km, a distance equivalent to three marathons, in 24 hours. During the day the desert heat can reach above 45 degrees Celsius, and at night the temperature can drop as low as 0 degrees Celsius.

The race was inaugurated in April 2008 and will be a yearly event.[citation needed]


The winner of the first Namibian Ultra Marathon, Tom Maguire, finished the race in 17 hours and 15 minutes.[citation needed] The winner the second year was Darren Roberts (in 20h 28min), narrowly beating Tom Adams. In the end only one minute separated the two. Emma Rogan came in as first woman, and fourth overall, on 21h 27min.

In 2010 Tom Adams came back to Namibia and did win the race with a new course record of 14 hours 1 minute. Alexandra O'Donovan came third overall and first woman and also set a new course record with 18 hours 11 minutes.

In 2009, Helen Skelton, presenter of popular British children's television show Blue Peter, became the second woman to complete the course.

Other desert marathons[edit]

Other desert marathons include the world-famous Marathon Des Sables or MdS, a race through the Sahara desert over six days, covering more than five marathons. Marathon Des Sables. A new 126 km ultra marathon is following the Namibian Ultra Marathon format and is launching in 2011, Grand Canyon 24h Ultra.

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