Race Media


22 Jun, 2019

I can still hear the quietness of the Gobi - Mongolia AA

I can still hear the quietness of the Gobi - Mongolia Action Asia

I keep wandering off momentarily thinking I’m sleeping in my ger with the fresh dry air coming thru the small hole in the roof and the sounds of the birds landing occasionally on my roof making little chitter chat noises and then flying off. Everything seemed so slow and you could think. Oh too be in that mental state again…..And the fact we were all cut-off from our mobile phones due to no signals meant everyone had no choice but to socialize. Such a rare commodity these days.

The Gobi Desert where the Mongolia Action Asia 3 day ultra-marathon took place is often imagined as a lifeless desert like in many other parts of the world. In reality, most part of the Gobi Desert are a land of steppes, sands, mountains, rich with wildlife and also, it is a home of two humped camels which many saw on day 2 of our event. The Mongolian Gobi Desert is the largest dinosaur fossil reservoir in the world. The Gobi is a habitat of the rarest animals and a unique natural landscape.

What was interesting in the Gobi desert at the Mongolia Action Asia ultra was many didn’t realize that the Gobi is a habitat of the rarest animals and a very unique natural landscape that we all found out with the weather changing at least 3x on day 2 climbing up thru canyons.

It was rewarding hearing from many after the event.

"A fantastic opportunity for personal challenge in the most breathtaking landscapes. Michael designs excellent routes with differing terrains, giving people of every fitness and experience level, the opportunity to participate and succeed" said British national Laura Weeks who overcame Chemotherapy treatment to join the event.

“The Mongolia Action Asia Ultra really went above and beyond my expectations - the organization, the volunteers, the location. Now I’m itching to do another one of the 3 day ultras” said Hong Kong’s Nicky Inge a regular podium finisher in some of Hong Kong events.

The overall winner of the 3 day ultra in the 100km category, Portugese and Macau based Rui Alves said ‘A beautiful course which, although challenging, allowed time for countless contemplating of the vast landscape that made up memories that will forever be in my mind”.

At the finish on day 2 we caught American Isabella De La Houssaye saying “the course was brilliant. Oh my god it was beautiful. It was challenging, technical and perfect in all the way. So great job on that”.

"An incredible way to experience the diverse landscapes, culture & meet like-minded running enthusiasts from all walks of life." said Aditya Kothari from Belgium.

“Hello Michael, Thanks to you and your amazing Action Asia Event team for such a well-planned organized experience in Mongolia. I really enjoyed it beyond my expectations and loved being with like-minded people who love adventures”, said Australian Kellie Yule who is setting up a charity fundraiser page for RUN HK , to send to all my friends in an effort to raise some funds for Virginie and the crew for our refugees in HKG to keep running.

"Like every great experience in life, this well-organized race through a beautiful landscape made the hours of my 100km seem to fly by in no time!" said Pim Meijer from the Netherlands.

“It’s hard to resume the experience in 1 sentence! But I’d say so: I will forever remember how lucky I was to run that far, in scenic endless grasslands which made me feel both very small and so free. Despite being an accomplishment for all of us, I have found it to be a very humbling experience. You see infinite space and it’s good to be reminded our modern comfortable lifestyle is never granted and even without it we can do great things!” said French national Leslie Van.

“The last section with all the goats or should I call them ‘spectators’ high up on the rocks all looking at us running by was just amazing. Really want to take it easy as scenery is so stunning’ said Frenchman Remy Paris.

Keith Russell, a regular on the Action Asia Events circuit who did the Kazakhstan AAE recently was full of humor at the finish saying “I was first in the human category. I think that guy who beat me by 25 minutes (on day 2) is clearly not human as has a little bit of cheetah inside him (referring to Wat King Long). It was great. It was nice to get some scrambling in with a little battle with Pierre who was near me but just an amazing course” said British Russell.

Edith Cheung said “Overall the experience was amazing, despite being quite challenging the beautiful views and wonderful arrangements more than made up for it. The most memorable was probably the fact that there was barely any signal which acted as a much needed social media cleanse and allowed me to enjoy the entire experience that much more. I would like to extend my gratitude to the organizing party”.

Full results are posted under the Results section of Action Asia website, but special mentioning to Rui Alves who finished top of the podium of the 100km overall in 10 hours 57 minutes just 3 minutes in front of Frenchman Arnaud Michel Echalier in 11 hours.

Leslie Van a French national was the overall Female champion of the 100km in 11 hours 34 minutes.

In the Men’s 60km category King Long Wat from Hong Kong smashed thru the course in an amazing time of 5 hours 4 minutes with Hong Kong’s Nicky Inge grabbing the Overall Women’s title in 6 hours 32 minutes.

Participants chipped in charity funds at the final awards dinner which were donated to the local Mongolian orphanage that help kids who experienced violence and fight with human trafficking, to date, they have built 2 orphanages. You can find there NGO link for more info or to make a donation at https://m.facebook.com/lantuundohio/

The event couldn’t have happened without the dedication and hard work of many local nomads, Doctors, Cooks and local Mongolian marshals who Action Asia Events has worked with over the past 7 years to make the event run.

Lastly I would like to thank my team at Action Asia Events who year around work hard and extremely dedicated to the adventure cause. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart and do hope we can get you outside to follow one of our next amazing journeys that will touch your soul.


Written by Michael Maddess - Course Designer

Action Asia Events


Race Results


100km - Top 5 Men

Name - Nationality - Team/Sponsor - Finishing Time

1. Rui Alves – Portugal - 10:57:05

2. Arnaud Michel Echalier – France – 11:00:04

3. Remi Paris – France - 12:52:15

4. Ross Stewart – United Kingdom - 13:02:56

5. Nicholas Wilcox – United Kingdom - 13:25:07


100km - Top 5 Women

Name - Nationality - Team/Sponsor - Finishing Time

1. Leslie Van – France - 11:34:42

2. Zoe Chazen – United States - 11:55:21

3. Mally Stewart – United Kingdom - 13:32:35

4. Caroline Spivey – United Kingdom - 15:23:00

5. Claire Anderson - United Kingdom - 15:23:00


60km - Top 5 Men

Name - Nationality - Team/Sponsor - Finishing Time

1. Wat King Long – Hong Kong – 05:04:45

2. Keith Russell – United Kingdom – 06:03:56

3. Pierre Morel – France – 06:05:10

4. Mohamed Atmani – France - 06:31:04

5. Nicola Pantone – Italy - 06:32:10


60km - Top 5 Women

Name - Nationality - Team/Sponsor - Finishing Time

1. Nicky Inge – Hong Kong - 06:32:40

2. Imogen Short – United Kingdom - 06:47:49

3. Lucy McNally – United Kingdom - 06:58:30

4. Michelle Shepherd – Australia - 07:30:50

5. Rebecca Wilcox – United Kingdom - 07:32:49



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