Destinations

The 100KM Pharaonic Race – The Race of Pharaohs

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I am constantly on the lookout for interesting races that I believe readers may want to hear about (the problem is always my writing the reports fast enough!). I like to look at races where there are not already some decent reports out or that take place in interesting destinations. Well, for this one, I need your advice!

The 100KM Pharaonic Race

100KM Pharaonic Race

Believe it or not, this race has been on my radar for about 7 years. When I first heard about it, I had only run marathons but this race was the one that forced me to set my sights at longer races. I have still never run this, and I have read some little reviews that were quite negative, but I think I really want to do it! I want to hear if you would be interested in hearing about it/seeing it and if you think I should do it!

The race actually dates back to the 600 B.C. era when a pharaoh checked on his troops and their fitness. The story, which comes from the race website, reads like this:

The idea was first initiated when in 1977 the Egyptian Egyptologist,Ahmed Moussa who while digging discovered a piece of rock telling the story of Pharaonic soldiers running a race of 100 Km. This race took place in 690-665 B.C, during the reign of king Taharka, when the king went to inspect an army camp and found the soldiers in perfect physical fitness. It was then that he laid down the rules for the running race. 
The race was held in the area between Sakkara Pyramid and Faiyum Oasis ,passing by Memphis, Dahshur Pyramid,Elleshet Pyramid, Kefren Pyramid ending at Hawara Pyramid at Faiyum.The King himself participated in part of the race to show his interest in the sport.The surprise in the translation of the hieroglyphic scriptures is that the winner completed the race in eight hours only
To revive this memory the race will take place at the same area and with almost the same routing.

This sounds like a really interesting race and route to run! Now, let me lay out the pros and cons so you can help me with this. (Website)

Pros:

  • It is only 4 hours away from my by plane (Greece)
  • Not many people have run it, so it would be nice to review
  • The scenery (pyramids) should be a really cool race site
  • It is an ultra 🙂
  • It gives me Africa for an official marathon (giving me 5 continents that I have run official marathons on)
  • The dates work
  • Redemption – the only one of my solo marathon runs that did not work out on my dash around the world was Cairo
  • The website says that each runner will have his/her own car

Cons:

  • Not many people run it – last year, there were only 6 official finishers (solo teams)
  • The 11 Hour time limit (a 10:39 pace per mile) – I have run 100K in 11:40, so I would have to cut that down
  • Not a lot of experience from people to draw from

The race takes place on Friday, November 21, 2014. It starts at 6AM and ends at 5PM. I am really leaning towards wanting to do it for the experience itself, but also to review and provide some nice photos and videos of.

Here is the schedule:

NOV.18th     Arrival Cairo  International airport over night at hotel.

NOV.19th     After breakfast visit Citadel of Salah El Din , Mohammed  Ali
Mosque, Egyptian Museum and Khan El Khalili Bazaar.

NOV.21th      After breakfast visit Pyramids of Giza ,Sphinx , Sakkara and
Memphis  Followed by Official Inauguration of the 13th. 
100 Km Pharaonic Race .

NOV.21st    Run Day.
03:00        Wake up call for all participants  .
03:30        Breakfast at hotel .
04:00        Departure to HAWARA Pyramid.
06:00        Firing the Go A HEAD sign.
18:00        Back to hotel.
19:00        Gala Dinner Party .

NOV.22nd   Final departure back home .

So, help me out – should I do this race? Would you do it? Would you be interested in reading about it?

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About the author

Charlie

Charlie has been an avid traveler and runner for many years. He has run in marathons around the world for less than it would cost to travel to the next town - all as a result of collecting and using miles and points. Over the years, he has flown hundreds of thousands of miles and collected millions of miles and points.
Now he uses this experience and knowledge to help others through Running with Miles.

2 Comments

  • Hi Charles,
    I am also interested in the race but have some concerns about the cut off time of 11 Hrs. This is a bit on the tight side for me.
    My longest run was the Comrades 89k in 2010 with a time of 10:58:48
    The Comrades as you probably know is somewhat hilly, so this might balance the extra 10k of the Pharaonic. I would be interested in your views on the matter.

    Best regards
    Harold Gleave

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