Monday, July 11, 2011

5 most interesting endurance races

The following excellent piece of journalism caught my ever-flowing websurfing attention.

SB Nation: Forget The Tour De France: These Are The World's Most Insane Endurance Races.

Tour de France is an ancient event that hardly anybody bothers to follow, except for the crashes and doping scandals of course. There are a number of great but relatively unknown races, that should be so much more interesting to our endurance athletic events aficionado posse.
  • RAAM. I just blogged about this year's superfast Race Across America and the winner Christoph Strasser.
  • Badwater Ultramarathon. It starts today. Unfortunately both the rookie Finnish dude and the badass David Goggins seem to have pulled out, but there are still a few interesting characters left. For example, Marshall Ulrich (just read his new book Running On Empty) and Pam Reed (who has a Scandinavian family background - if memory serves her father was from Finland and their surname was Saari, which means an island in Finnish).
  • 4Deserts. Four races in various deserts. I think Antarctica is more like a dessert than desert though. Dean Karnazes writes about how he did all four in one calendar year in his latest book 'Run!'.
  • Deca Ironman. Ten Ironman-distance triathlons. Actually I prefer to follow the UltraMan Hawaii, which is not as insane, but usually more interesting.
  • Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race. This is my favorite, and it's going on right now. I call it Tour de Block in Bronx. The check the results daily. The current leader Pekka Aalto is from my hometown Helsinki, Finland. Asprihanal (a name given by late Sri Chinmoy, the founder of the event) is probably the opposite of Lance Armstrong as a person, although both of them are 7-time winners. Tip: there's a blog Perfection Journey that follows the race.


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