Just two weeks to start our amazing and unforgetable journey. It’s a good time to send you some more information and some basic tips:
PROGRAM: In the coming days we will send you the families distribution, the list of projects and the official program of the trip, but we anticipate that this year is scheduled a new event: if the weather allows, we will sleep one night in the desert, so it is essential the sleeping bag and warm clothes.
SHOPPING: In the camps you can pay in Algerian currency but also in Euros. We recommend you to bring small bills and when you go to the market to be accompanied by the kids in the family to pay the right price. If someone buys a stone or stuffed animal, it is very possible to have it removed at Tindouf airport. If you want to bring some sand as souvenir, do it mixing it with clothes or shoes.
REGISTRATION: The registration will be on Sunday 26th afternoon at the race office (School of Sport in Smara). This place will be our headquarters throughout the journey and where you can receive information or leave messages.
RACE. Although all have determined the race in which you will participate, you can change the distance until the day before at the registration desk. The route is practically the same as last edition with some changes in the area of Auserd. Please remember two tactical details: the hardest part of the marathon is from the kilometer 22 to 30, and at the end when you walk into the first tents of Smara, there is still much because you skirt around the camp.
The route runs largely with the sun in front, so that the sunglasses are almost essential. If sandstorm blows, you must be protected and follow the marking carefully and trying to go in groups. If the storm rages organization can neutralize the race. In the course you have feeding zones approximately every 3 kilometers and in the organization cars.
TIME KEEPING: Although less important in this race are the timesheets, we give some clues from previous years. In the Marathon the fastest usually end in 3 hours (the record is 2.43) and large squad arrive between 3.30 and 5.00 hours. In the half marathon the best arrive more or less in 1.50. We remind you that you have plenty of time to complete the race and there are many people who do it walking … in case anyone gets overwhelmed!
CATEGORIES: We also inform that there are four age categories (absolute, Master 30, Master 40 and veterans) for both men and women. These categories are valid for making classifications but have no specific awards. The award is intended for the absolute winners each of the races. All participants have a medal (produced using traditional methods in camps).
SHOWERS: If there are no problems, it is planned to install a shower for the day of the race. It is advisable to wear flip flops, towel, shampoo … In each house there is a small toilet with a hole in the floor and a bucket of water. In the courtyard also usually a basin to wash your face and hands. We insist, baby wipes are very convenient.
CLOTHING BAGS: Buses will depart to the start points of the race early in the morning and it’s quite cold. So we’ll give to all of you a plastic bag with your number and you have to leave your clothes in and store it in the bus. We’ll pick them up and carry them to the finish line.
OUR STAY: The Saharawi people are very hospitable and welcome us with open arms. Anyway we respect fully their traditions and we’ll be integrated into their lifestyle. All participants will sleep in Smara families tents; we’ll distribute you into groups of 4-5 people per tent. The family welcome you with joy, invite you to a tea, will make you a gift … The organization, following our policy to pay all our expenses at the camps, provides each family with the fee for the maintenance of assigned runners. In any case, without any commitment, you can give a gift for the kids or even a donation to the mother of the family.
CHILDREN’S OLYMPICS: We organize, as every year, a race of children. It’s all a show and is somewhat stressful because over a thousand children participate. At the end we give a gift to everyone. You are invited to work with us as a volunteer to organize this amazing race.
PRESS: One goal of this race is spreading the Saharawi cause around the world. Travelling with us are journalists from various national and international media. It is important that you also share your adventure with local media.
SOCIAL MEDIA: Beginning February 19th we’ll be at the camps for preparations, posting daily updates on social media.
You can follow us on:
Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/SaharaMarathonOrg/
Facebook Group, to share your photos too https://www.facebook.com/groups/6973862819/
You can also join and share our crowdfunding group Better Now: https://es.betternow.org/projects/sahara-marathon-2017