Baldock man soldiers on after key kit goes AWOL before ultra marathon

Trevor Collett with his equipment

Trevor Collett with his equipment - Credit: Archant

An endurance ace from Baldock says his world fell apart when he had to tackle the toughest foot race on earth without his own gear.

Trevor Collett, a former member of the Household Cavalry, ran three days of the gruelling Marathon des Sables – a distance equivalent to 51/2 normal marathons across the Sahara desert – in borrowed kit after his bag was lost in Gatwick Airport.

The 40-year-old said: “It was the worst feeling. I can’t even put it into words. I was absolutely gutted when I found out.

“I thought I was going to have to go home. I couldn’t believe it was happening to me.”

Trevor had spent 10 months and £2,500 preparing a bag with the perfect kit for the race, but it was lost by Monarch Airlines and did not reach him until stage four, after he had already completed more than 100k wearing tennis shorts and shoes which were two sizes too big.


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He said it felt like he was running with bricks on his back and slippers on his feet.

Thanks to his wife Mel’s trips to Gatwick Airport to locate the bag, Trevor had his kit returned to him in time for stage four, the epic 92k run.

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Trevor said: “I had to run with the blisters and bruises from the earlier stages, but the support from the UK spurred me on.

“I was sent emails that were printed off for me, some from close friends, some from complete strangers, which got me through.

“At the toughest moments, when I thought I would have to drag my warm carcass across the ground, I thought of those messages of support.

“It made me think: There is no way I am stopping.”

Trevor ran the ultra marathon for charity Walking With The Wounded, which supports veterans with injuries get the skills to go back into paid employment.

You can donate to Trevor’s fundraising page by visiting uk.virginmoneygiving.com/trevorcollett.

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