By Sports Reporter/Doha
Yesterday, Mubarak Abdulaziz al-Khulaifi set-off from the Corniche on his attempt to set a Fastest Known Time (FKT) for a run around Qatar.
He aims to complete the run, which is approximately 500km, with an aim of completing it in under seven days, which is the current mark set by Qatar resident and adventurer Pierre Daniel in February 2018. Daniel tackled the run in a self-supported manner.
Mubarak, who is an executive manager in corporate banking with Masraf Al Rayyan, and a father of four, aims to cover over 80km a day in his record attempt. He is being supported by a crew of friends, all of whom are either taking time off work or juggling day-to-day commitments to make sure he has access to food and drink as he pushes himself to the limits of human endurance.
His team includes Abdulaziz al-Abdulla, Fahad al-Buenain, Fahad al-Hadfa, Faisal al-Zaman, Talal al-Emadi, Ali al-Mansouri, Rashid al-Hajri, Noel Cuaton and coach Ryan Sosna-Bowd.
Al-Khulaifi was the first elected Qatari runners’ representative in the International Trail Running Association (ITRA), and also organised the first ultra-trail race in Qatar (THEEB 2019). He has also participated in many global trail races, including Trans Jeju 2017 (50K, Mountain Range), Ironman 70.3 Sri Lanka 2018 and Tarawera 100 Mile Endurance Run 2019. He is the first Qatari to finish a 100-mile trail race.
“This challenge is the culmination of a journey that was inspired by trailblazing Qatari athletes, like Abdulla al-Hammadi who inspired me into sport and athletes like Pierre Daniel and so many more who opened my eyes to the possibilities within each of us,” al-Khulaifi said before starting his endeavour.
“I hope that this challenge inspires more Qataris to push their limits whether it be in sport, art, culture, business or serving their community, and to live the fullest lives they can.”
Daniel, the first and current record holder of the Run Around Qatar, said, “It’s fantastic what Mubarak is attempting and has achieved for the Qatari trail-running community. The Run Around Qatar is a significant challenge and will test him unlike anything he has done, he has the unique spirit of an adventurer, looking to push his limits and enjoy the natural beauty of Qatar in a way that can only be done during such a challenge. It will be my joy to see him at the finish line and celebrate his success.”
Al-Khulaifi’s progress can be followed on Instagram @Trailssports.
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