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  • Writer's pictureAmelie Mongol Derby Racer

Wild card

During my birthday celebrations, we were talking about the Mongol Derby and what I was doing (or not) about it. Then, one of my friends mentioned a TV reality show where there’s always a wild card. Indeed, in many races and competitions, the organizers accept a participant who is not quite cut for it but can definitely bring some spice and diversity to the mix. In this one in particular, they make a point to always have one just for the fun of it - and the element of the unexpected. And, although the wild card is trying hard, he is clearly not at the level of the other competitors.

For a while now, I’ve been pondering the idea that I’m the wild card of the Mongol Derby 2020: a beginner rider with big dreams and no understanding of what it takes to go through 1000 km on horseback.

Sam and I before our second trail together

Have you ever entered a competition thinking, I’m very green but I’ll get there by the time I need to? Of course you did. My friends signed up for marathons before they even started running 2km, and that’s why they sign up. The training, the trial and error, and the preparation through it all.

I remember when Erik from the Mongol Derby interviewed me; he made it very clear that I needed to get more experience and hop on as many different horses as possible.

Now, whether or not I’m the wild card, I’m thrilled by all the things I need to do and learn to be able to go through the race, exactly like a first-time marathoner.

I have been following the Derby very closely this year and the different racers. I am in awe of the winner, Bob, he is a true inspiration. He set a goal for himself and he just went and did it.

And oh, yes, he is 70 year old. See more here. Congrats Bob!


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