Reputed to be the “toughest footrace on earth” this multi-day “ultra marathon” is run over six consecutive days over a desert course of between 150 and 156 miles. Through endless dunes, over rocky jebels, and across white-hot salt plains and with temperatures regularly reaching 50 centigrade, the runners will have had sand as a constant companion, clouds of it under their feet, sheets of it stinging their eyes and lots of it chafing where it shouldn’t. The long stage has become a legend in itself. They will have run out of a Saharan morning, into the dusk and then the dark, many not finishing the 80+km (52 miles) till well into the next day. Their feet will swell, crack and bleed under the pressure and the heat.
That Tom finished the race in 3rd place overall (behind two Moroccan runners) as the highest ranked Britain to ever enter (since it started in 1986) is testament to his physical strength, endurance and mental toughness and that whilst doing so managing to raise nearly £7,000 (with gift aid) for the Welsh Guards charity (with donations still coming in) demonstrates a most selfless and charitable attitude (he has also raised a large amount for the Walking with the Wounded Charity).
Tom’s performance was covered on Forces TV.
I am sure you all join with his regiment in sending him your heartfelt congratulations on a job well done.