Race Director Ray O’ Connor taking on Marathon Des Sables Peru

He has put in the miles and the gym work along with hours of careful planning. Now Run Galway Bay Race Director, Ray O’Connor is in Peru to take part in what has been described as the toughest footrace on earth’ The Marathon Des Sables Peru.

Travelling through the desert, by jeep or camel is no easy task at the best of times. Running through the sandy, arid, dune laden terrain with a 20kg bag that includes your running gear, food, bed and survival essentials on your back is almost insane! Yet this is what Ray signed up to do as his end of season challenge.Covering 250km across the Ica desert in sizeable chunks of 30km – 80km per day is what lay ahead of Ray and his fellow Athenry AC member and Ultra Running specialist Ruthann Sheahan; who incidentally thought this event would be a great idea for a holiday. Also flying the flag for Ireland is Leitrim’s Thomas Reynolds who is no stranger to racing in the heat or long distances.Covering 250km across the desert in 6 stages in sizeable chunks of 20km – 68km per day is what lay ahead of Ray and his fellow Athenry AC member and Ultra Running specialist Ruthann Sheahan; who incidentally thought this event would be a great idea for a holiday. Also flying the flag for Ireland is Leitrim’s Thomas Reynolds who is no stranger to racing in the heat or long distances.

The event started 3 days ago with a 37k trek to start them off on their South American sojourn. This was followed by another two 37k treks. Ray is now taking part in Stage 4 of the event which is the toughest day of the 6 stage event as the participants have 32 hours to complete a 68.2k run through the desert.

In advance of jetting off to Peru, Ray had a chat with our resident chatterbox & event MC Joanne, you can view the inteview HERE

You can follow the progress of the race on the link below and also send messages of support HERE

Follow the progress of the Irish Athletes HERE

Ruthann Sheahan number 0051
Ray O’Connor number 0139
Thomas Reynolds number 0106

Go n-éirí an bóthar libh

Ray’s participation is supported by: Osprey Europe, Spyderco and Petzl

*Photo Credit MDSPERU 

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