When Running Fetches the Big Bucks

I get so bone weary reading abou the insane salaries enjoyed by football players and basketball players and baseball players. At least the professional males. These guys make more every year than some of us make in a life time.

I was therefore really heartened to learn of the Mt. Cameroon Race of Hope which pits people against a mountain with a live volcano at the top and rewards a precious few with prize money equal to 4 times a person’s standard salary in Cameroon.

Of course I learned about it through an email from a DC runner named Kate Elliot who wondered if I might give the documentary her friend made about a little air play. I was going to wait until Saturday and post this over at CRN but I couldn’t wait!

About the film she writes

This marathon-length race traverses over 10,000 vertical feet up a live volcano, one of the tallest on the African continent. The racers, mostly local men and women, compete for the equivalent of four years’ salary, but to win they must overcome altitude sickness, temperature fluctuations of 50 degrees, and loose volcanic rock— many wearing only plastic sandals.

Runner/filmmaker friends of mine just released a beautiful film about the race, called Volcanic Sprint, focusing particularly on the story of Sarah Etonge, winner of the women’s race in the last 5 out of 7 years and a 39 year old, single mother of 7. She is known locally as the “Queen of the Mountain.” The filmmakers are presently back in Cameroon shooting the 2008 race and donating 400 running shoes to the local athletes with their charity partner Soles for Souls.

This is definitely one of those movies that makes what hard is about very, very clear.

For more information please visit the film’s site here.

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6 Responses to When Running Fetches the Big Bucks

  1. david says:

    Pretty amazing. I will not complain on Monday after running the very flat sea level A1A Marathon in Ft. Lauderdale. Promise.

  2. iliketoast says:

    what a story! i’d love to see it

  3. jeanne says:

    awesome. why does that look like fun to me?

    it’s like labor. we forget the horror.

  4. Donald says:

    Wow. That’s one serious race. I’ll look for the documentary.

  5. momo says:

    omg. i’m a wimp, i admit. there’s no way. those people are incredible – what spirit and strength.

  6. Jen says:

    That’s incredible. I will order the DVD for sure! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

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