Mark Gillett

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Archive for the ‘Expeditions’ Category

Trans Atlas Marathon Videos

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Stage 1

Faces of The Race

Its more than just the runners…

Mad In Marrakech

 

Written by markgillett

June 15, 2014 at 9:56 am

Trans Atlas Marathon Winners

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The Trans Atlas Marathon has been a truly beautiful experience from every perspective. The mix of the best Moroccan runners, some European runners, small Atlas villages, local people working the race and fantastic “tough race” conditions has culminated in a brilliant last stage. It set out from the village of Siti Fatma deep in the valley and took the following brutal profile.

6 etapa TAM 2014As you can see, its no walk in the park as with any of the stages. I will post the profiles of the previous days later in this article.

Trans Atlas Marathon 2014

Ali Naciri

 

The lead mens runner Ali Naciri by this stage was always going to win barring a major accident and he rolled home in Imlil in 32h57 for the 280km to cheers as he came down the street packed with residence cheering on their local heroes. He was followed closely by Samir Akhdar a regular at the MDS.

Winning lady was the incredible Aziza Raji, in 39h52. Aziza is a marathon runner of 2h 50 and the hills just never seemed to affect her. What a great competitor and role model for other Moroccan women. Another female competitor, Aicha Mrabet-Bensalah who ran her first race ever also completed. Half Moroccan half swiss, she came in at the end of the day to massive cheers and admiration for a truly brave and well run race.

Aziz Raji, Womens Winner

Aziz Raji, Womens Winner

The final stage of the event is a stand alone Marathon stage as well as being part of the Ultra. This allows other locals to enter without the fear of a huge first race or simply just to run a marathon. This years race was won by 2014 Marathon des Sables winner Rachid El Mourabity in 4h 46.

To summarise, as a new race I can only say good things about the Trans Atlas Marathon. I think it will grow fast but it will also be restricted in terms of numbers to keep the atmosphere that makes it so special. Sign up now if you are tempted. www.transatlasmarathon.com

Mens Results: 1st – Ali Naciri (Maroc) 32h57, 2nd – Samir Akhdar (Maroc) 34h40, 3rd – Smayri Rachid (Maroc)

Womens Results: 1st – Aziza Raji (Maroc) 39h52, 2nd – Magdalena Martini (Ger) 48h32, 3rd – AichaM’rabet-Bens (Maroc) 61h54

42K Results: 1st – Rachid Mourabity 4h46, 2nd – Abderahim Goumissa 5h02, 3rd – Abdeallah Ait Tazert 5h14

Team Winner UVU.

Here is a portfolio of the final stage to browse through.

Other stage profiles

Stage 1

1 etapa TAM 2014

Stage 2

2 etapa TAM 2014

Stage 3

3 etapa TAM 2014

Stage 4

4 etapa TAM 2014

Stage 5

5 etapa TAM 2014

As you can see, some pretty awesome days! Enter now.

Written by markgillett

June 15, 2014 at 8:04 am

Trans Atlas Marathon

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Last night I arrived in Morocco for the first time in just over a year. The last time was to shoot for the Marathon Des Sables but I am here this year for a new race, The Trans Atlas Marathon. Travelling and filming with Chris O’Conner of CojoFilms, We were greeted by Mohamad Ahansal. The last time I saw him was winning the 2013 MDS. Since then he and his brother Lahcen have set up their own race and, wow! What a course this seems to be…. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by markgillett

June 10, 2014 at 10:21 am

Yukon Quest 2014 (or #yq2014 for those who speak in hash tags…)

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It finally got underway this morning with an on-time start of 11am. Snow was trucked in for the street start which was moved from the river last minute for safety reasons.. What an exercise! And the efficiency and organisation of this race is just incredible.

Once the mushers left by noon we hopped off and edited a few shots and then drove to Pleasant Valley Stores in Two Rivers – Such great names! – and we are now at the checkpoint editing, writing and uploading more stuff… You can find us on my Facebook, The Yukon Quest Official Facebook or probably just about anywhere to do with dogs on the internet.. Just search or hash tag search #yq2014

Here is a small gallery of shots from our arrival in Fairbanks.

Written by markgillett

February 2, 2014 at 4:16 am

The Yukon Quest

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I have never seen the moon as in I did in Yukon

I have never seen the moon as in I did in Yukon

I find myself back in the Yukon having said I would probably miss this year. Its now the 5th year I’ve ventured and more and more the North seems to suck me back into the wilderness and beauty that it exudes.

The team this year is myself, Tom Barber and Heidi McGuire. Tom has been with me the last three trips I’ve made and Heidi I met in 2009 on the YAU. I can’t imagine better people to work with and combined with the OTC team and Yukon Quest team, I am really looking forward to the next two weeks of trail, fun, tiredness and usual battles to get the job done.

Yukon Quest 2012, Day3

The Thinking Musher

Already the curveballs have started and the main one has been the weather. The heaviest snow the Yukon has seen for years has all but been discarded by the spring like temperatures of the last week or so. The roads are near clear and the trail is very different. But this does not hold the Quest back. In fact it probably enhances it. Teams will have to be at their best to win this year. Now that the temperatures have fallen again, there will be ice, and possibly overflow. All great stuff for the thinking musher!

Its these conditions or changing conditions that make this such a great race. Like some of the desert stuff I cover, it can be very unpredictable, very demanding and a great challenge. If it were the same each year, how easy that would be to calculate? How boring would it be to follow? The North will always have its say whatever.

We drive up to Fairbanks tomorrow and a few nights of functions before the action start and then we set off back to Whitehorse. We will be posting videos and images along the route and your participation is vital. Comments, posts, opinions (not to strong of course) and questions on Facebook and Twitter.

Yukon Quest

My favourite

Give us your thoughts on who you want to win, or if you don’t mind.. Our stories will be unique as they always are as the trail will, Im sure, give us plenty to talk about.  Can Hugh Neff do it again or will Allen Moore pip him to the post. Or will we have a new winner this year? Will Normand be the darling of the race? Or will that go back to Brent Sass again.. Is it Brent’s year to hold that trophy?

Well, by the 10th Feb we should know the answers to those questions so here’s to the Yukon Quest 2014. Im toasting with a glass of red in the High Country Inn, Whitehorse!

See you on the trail

Marathon Des Sables Time

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MDS Dunes

The Desert – Somewhere to Enjoy

I am sure there are many of you out there starting to get a little nervous about your last 12 weeks before the start of your MDS. I know exactly where you are at so just keep believing and training up to departure. Remember that tapering is no use, gathering calories does not work, go light, pack light and take the food you need. You have everything else to succeed and no reason to fail. You have water, shelter and food. The rest is in your head! Here is a little piece just published.. Good luck!!

http://www.sidetracked.com/marathon-des-sables/

Mark

Written by markgillett

January 2, 2014 at 3:05 pm

Big Ask!

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OX1A9242

Some of you will have read about YES 2014. Its a part of what I do and I give my time for six months to hopefully make a difference to 12 young peoples lives. I can’t do it regularly because its all consuming and I do not want tomake business out of it. The cost for 12 children to go is around £40,000 and I am reaching out to anyone who might be able help. Very soon we will have a giving page but in the mean time I am looking for one or two people who might like to underwrite this in its entirety. I meet many people who could afford this but the key to wanting to help is, if you feel a connection to helping? Basically the youth today are the future and will be here long after we are gone.. They will be making decisions that will correct a lot of what we have done wrong in our time. This is why its close to me. Please read the info on our FB page, share it or send to someone who might help. If you want more information please private message me.

Or call me on +447973 690087

https://www.facebook.com/pages/YES-2014/697106353641124

Written by markgillett

December 5, 2013 at 10:45 am