After a grueling 20 hour run through tough terrain, Dave and his team has conquered the OXFAM Trail walker coming 4th out of over 400 teams and has helped raise over $5000 in the process. AWJ is extremely proud on the effort that you have put in to achieve this feat.
There wouldn’t be a team without the fantastic support crew behind the guys. They were there at every training session, every checkpoint and more importantly the end of the race to drive the guys back home at 4am Sunday Morning.
Below is an account of the run written by Jenni Ruse (Dave’s Wife).
Well…he did it! After 20 hours and 6 minutes, David and his team crossed the finish line for the Oxfam 100km Trailwalker. The weather gods heeded our prayers and were kind, with only a bit of rain at the second last checkpoint. The sun shone throughout the day – being a little too hot for running.
David found the section between the second and third checkpoint to be the toughest both physically and mentally. Getting into Bobbin Head (Checkpoint 3) with a staggering 58kms still to run, he wondered how he could possibly go on. A surprise Facetime from the Wright cousins in America, showing their support and well wishes to the team, (and a second change of the many socks he packed) pumped him up and he was ready to tackle the next stage.
The support crew improvised at St Ives CP 4 with a game of Snicket (cricket using an umbrella and Snickers bar). It was tough work waiting for the team, while eating cheese and fruit platters…we forgot the wine! Running into the CP at sunset with Ally and Mel, they refueled, changed into longer tights (Licorice Legs David), and donned their beanies and headlights. They headed out of St Ives, and were running in the dark for the first time, for another 12.4 kms until the CP 5.
The support crew had a great setup at CP 5 (it felt like a fun camping holiday for us) but I’m not sure it was even noticed by the now exhausted and frustrated men when they ran in. They had run 70 km, it was getting cool and fatigue was setting in.
The next section proved to be 4 kms longer than the official information had given. The men were continually searching for the course markers and were NOT happy coming into the next checkpoint. They were sitting in about 8th position (out of 460 teams) and so there were only a handful of people at each checkpoint. The full moon assisted our support crew to play games while waiting to keep from going crazy.
Heading out of Davidson Park CP6 the strain on the bodies was evident. Waiting at the next CP at midnight, we sat in the cars and watched as the rain started hitting the windscreens and eventually the team ran into the tents wet. They didn’t care at this stage about a bit of rain, they just wanted to fuel up and hit the last section!
The last section had a few hitches with understandable physical and mental strain. The support crew got about half an hour shut eye in the cars before making our way to the finish line set up at 2.30am. Two teams who finished just ahead of our team, were in the tent celebrating with some coldies, and we were trying our best to stay upright with our eyes open. Hearing that our team was not far from the finish line was amazing. I can’t describe how proud I felt of each one as I watched them cross the line. They started as 4 and with encouragement from each other and a will to succeed, they finished as 4. It was an incredible achievement as there were only 165 teams out of 460 who finished with their original 4 team mates – 35.87%. And our team was made up of two newbies (one who only started training this year and would walk into the house exhausted after managing two kilometers on the flat roads around the suburbs, and the other being one of the youngest runners in the event – Hayden is only 18!)
It was an inspirational journey we went on with these four determined and successful men – from all the training sessions, fundraising efforts, and the actual event, to our own celebratory dinner last night (with humorous trophies being awarded to the whole crew). We were privileged to be part of such a great experience, and had a blast with our team. The personal side of the experience was fantastic, topped off by knowing we were raising much needed funds for those living in poverty.
A huge thanks to everyone who supported David and the team throughout this experience. Your words of encouragement through texts, emails, FB, Facetime, and donations have made a big difference. A big shout out to David’s company AWJ Civil for the supply of the shirts. Great quality was appreciated by the boys running in them and the girls ‘modeling’ them. Thank you everyone. Love and hugs, Jenni xoxo
Here are a few stats from the weekend.
Step 1 Drag 1
RAISED $5,730 TARGET $5,710 100%
Time on Trail 20:06
Position 10th out of 460 teams
10th / 460 Overall : Overall
3rd / 102 Gender : Male
9th / 402 Age : Open
4th / 183 Category : Open
Total Amount Oxfam Sydney Trailwalker has raised so far: $2,074,262 Goal $2,700,000 12th September (close of fundraising)
Started: 460 teams, 1,840 walkers
Finished: 413 teams – 89.78%, 1,273 walkers – 69.18%
Average time: 32 hrs 20 mins
Average fundraising per team is currently at: $4,443