The second placed woman, Shelli Gordon, finished the Montane Spine Race yesterday, in 128 hours and 26 minutes. Shelli had spent five nights out on the course and she had a very important reason for putting herself through this gruelling race.
Shelli was running to raise awareness of male suicide and to raise funds for CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably). Sadly she lost her partner, Tony Holland, last year. You can read her story – and donate – here.
Shelli set out to raise £1400 but at the time of writing she has raised an incredible £25,000.
Shelli said of her training for the race: “The build up was hard. There was a lot riding on this, so I tried to put a lot of training in but it’s difficult to train when it’s coming up to Christmas and you’ve got your family. I missed some sessions and there was a lot of guilt there.”
The race was unsurprisingly difficult too, and she encountered a number of set-backs along the way: “I twisted my ankle early on and it was one drama after another from there. My ankle, my toe, my tendon, a chest infection, borderline hyperthermia. I just went checkpoint to check point wondering what would happen next. Still, the course is beautiful and the support on the race is fantastic.”
But when asked if there was a point she thought she wouldn’t make it, Shelli quickly answered, simply, “No.”
Shelli said of Jasmin Paris’s victory: “it’s fantastic! I’m just glad I finished in the same month as her. It opens the sport up to other women who might have thought…Well I’ve got children and work… but she’s breast-feeding and she’s smashed the record to bits and beaten all the men. It’s unbelievable!”
Gabriele Kenkenburg finished in third place in the women’s race in 13 hours and 58 minutes. Emiko Kawakami (JPN) has so far covered 246 miles and is on to finish in fourth position.
Congratulations to Shelli and Gabriele good luck to all of those still out there on the course. Keep dot watching!