Yesterday I got a sneak preview of a documentary IrishTV will be airing soon on ultra runner Daithí Ó Murchú, called Daithí – One man’s journey into the extreme, that focuses on his participation in this year’s Likeys 6633 Arctic Ultramarathon.
Unusually for ultra runners, Daithí tends to keep a low profile, and certainly wouldn’t be the first name most people would come up with when ultra running is mentioned. However, his record is impressive to put it mildly – a National Master Decathlon Champion and record holder, he has also captained the Ireland Masters athletic team to World Championship bronze medals, and national records.
The race itself must be one of the toughest physical challenges in the world – 566km, from Eagle Plains, Yukon, to the banks of the Arctic Ocean at Tuktoyaktuk, with average temperatures of -30 Degrees Celsius. At the time he entered the race, the DNF rate was an astonishing 99.97%, with only 11 people having ever finished.
The conditions really are brutal – it makes the type of ultras most of us do look like a walk in the park!
The documentary is a brilliant watch – it really gets into the mind of an ultra runner, the huge challenge of running in the arctic conditions, and is a fascinating study of a very complex and driven guy.
Daithí gives us a look at his preparations, his reasons for wanting to run it, and some of the truly amazing experiences he went through. He holds nothing back, and his descriptions of his trials and tribulations make for fascinating viewing. Definitely one to watch and to record for rewatching!
Daithí – One man’s journey into the extreme airs on IrishTV on Christmas night at 10pm UTC.