In a matter of days renowned international adventurer Ray Zahab is attempting to undertake a challenge that will be the ultimate test of his endurance. On June 23, Ray and his team will set out in the latest inov-8 Challenge Series expedition which will see them attempt to run across the Gobi Desert at its widest point covering a distance of approximately 2,300km, with minimal daily resupply. This would be the first time anyone has set out to run right across the broadest part of the Gobi Desert.
Canadian Ray is a man who has previously accomplished some astonishing feats. The intrepid athlete has run across the Sahara Desert, which was filmed for a documentary produced by actor Matt Damon. Ray has also broken the world speed record for an unsupported team expedition to the South Pole and was the first person to run the length of the entire Atacama Desert. This new test, however, will be the hardest of his life. It’s the equivalent distance of running from New York to Houston, Texas, in an extreme desert environment.
Starting in Mongolia and finishing in China, Ray and his teammate Kevin Lin will face remote conditions that will force them to tackle this desert adventure with extremely limited external support. At best the team will only be able to rely on one or two drops of supplies each day. This is the bare minimum given the harsh conditions that they will be running in. On foot and overland the team plans to meet with Nomads, learn from them and share their stories via live web broadcasting and film.
Ray will use the best equipment that he can to help him achieve his extreme goal. Ray has been working with the international, British-born brand inov-8 to ensure he has the best footwear, apparel and backpacks to survive the extreme conditions. His chosen footwear is the inov-8 Trailroc 245 and the inov-8 Terrafly 303. Ray’s clothing will include the inov-8 Race Elite Stormshell and also Race Elite Windshell to keep him protected from all the elements and he will carry his day supplies in the Race Elite, Race Pro and Race Ultra Vest packs.
Commenting on the task ahead, Ray said: “The team at inov-8 has been so helpful in preparation for this expedition. Truly…they have thought about everything my feet will go through, plus all the other kit I’ll need to support me. If we make it we will be the first humans to cross this desert running across its widest point – it’s crazy!!”
During the Gobi Expedition, professional photographers and videographers will join the team to capture footage and photos of the desert, the people and the expedition. At the end of the expedition, footage will be made available to schools for free download, for use in classroom projects leading up to the as yet not announced impossible2Possible Youth Expedition.
Ray added: “Our i2P Youth Expeditions are 100% free for participants and schools. My goal is to reach as many youth as possible- and through i2P give them the opportunity through their own adventures to learn that they can indeed achieve the extraordinary in their lives.”
In the final days of the expedition, Ray and Kevin will be joined by youth team members from Asia, and during the expedition a member of the i2P Youth Ambassador Alumni will join as support.
The expedition team will head into the desert on June 19. Ray and Kevin will start their epic run on June 23 and hope to reach the finish line in 35 days. The team hopes to cover an average of 70 kms a day.
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