Thursday, February 03, 2011

Badwater Babe for Kiddos' Aid

Badwater. It is the toughest footrace on the planet. From Death Valley to the Mount Whitney Portals in California, the 135-mile, nonstop footrace pits 90 of the world’s toughest athletes not so much against one another, but against themselves and the harsh, barren sauna of the hottest place on earth, during the hottest time of the year. The extreme conditions make this race a completely different animal than any other on the planet. Sheer training, strength, and fitness are not enough, as Badwater has brought even the most accomplished and elite athletes to their knees, as well as to tears. This is a race that requires the mental fortitude and unwavering resolve of passion that burns with a fire rivaled only, perhaps, by the sweltering heat radiating off the endless, molten asphalt of Highway 190, or the burn in the thighs while traversing the three mountain ranges of 13,000’ cumulative ascent, and nearly 5,000’ cumulative descent. It is neither for the faint of heart, nor faint of spirit, nor faint of mind. But fortunately, Catra Corbett lacks in none of these.

The name Catra Corbett is synonymous with ultrarunning. There are few races or conceived feats out there missing from Catra’s resume, but although she has paced and crewed her friend and four-time Badwater finisher Linda McFadden twice, this is Catra’s first Badwater entry. “It is time I run it,” she says.

It is said that a Badwater run is completed by the crew. Each runner is required to have a crew that will follow them throughout the race, in a vehicle alongside, tending to their every need. The crew paces them, waters them, tracks their fluid and food intake, tends to their blistering feet and skin, and keeps them sane, as the heat and the road take their toll on body and mind. Crewing is difficult, stressful, and thankless during the event, but the exceptionally-demanding course allows the runner to concern themselves only with running—everything else must fall on the crew.

As such, in addition to the hefty entrance fee, the runner must bear the expenses of their crew—including transportation, lodging, vehicles, and food—in addition to their own food, gear, and supplies. So to embark on this event takes not only the strength of body, fortitude of mind, and commitment, but also a considerable financial investment. That’s where we come in.

Training and preparing for Badwater are near-indomitable feats in-and-of themselves, without having to worry about financing the attempt. Catra’s sponsorship fell through at the last minute, so we…her friends and crew…are taking up the torch to raise funds to send her to Badwater and bring her home with the coveted Finisher’s Buckle. But…in true Catra fashion…that is not the sole, or ultimate, goal.

Catra continues to be involved in Chance to Compete, a non-profit whose goal is to remove the financial limitations that prevent some children from participating in athletics. C2C hopes to ensure that every child has a chance to turn athletic potential into reality. So while the short-term goal of this campaign is to raise the $3,000-to-$5,000 to get Catra to and through Badwater, her ultimate goal is to raise money for the children. Therefore, every dollar beyond her entrance fee and expenses will go directly to Chance to Compete.

Therefore, you have the opportunity to not only be a part of the personal history and achievement of a truly remarkable athlete and human being, but also to affect change in the lives of children. There is no greater gift than to feed someone’s passion, and to be able to do so while helping others find and exercise their own passions is a truly unique fortune.

So please, donate what you can, as much as you can, and pass this along to your friends. Together, we will get Catra to Badwater, while making a difference in so many young lives. Any runner will tell you that running, without fail, gives you back far more than you ever put into it, so after years of running and taking everything it has to give her, Catra is trying to give back. As all her friends and associates will attest, Catra is not only an incredible athlete, but she is also, truly, an amazing, effervescent, and inspiring person—a bright light on the dark trail of the mundane world—and we are all grateful to count her among our friends. Let us follow her example, and give back. Let’s get CatraRunner, the Dirt Diva, this Badwater Babe to Death Valley!!
If you can donate please go to the site.

Thanks to everyone who has given me hope I will be there in July :-)

Badwater Babe for Kiddos' Aid Photos(click to enlarge)

Donor Comments Show All

Best of luck to you!!! :-) I know you are going to ROCK!


Catra, you're an INSPIRATION TO US ALL ;-} *Love you*, girl!!! ;-}


good luck Catra!

you're a super woman :)


Neil Scott said...

Very good luck in the run.
I met up with Lisa Tamati while in New Zealand last year, she has run the race twice and written a great book about it called Running Hot. I can't imagine running something like that, I have found it tough enough running in the 35C temperatures we are having here at the moment.


Jackson Pollock said...

It's not really necessary. Badwater may indeed harm your health. You are delightful and an inspiration, but I worry about you doing this.

Catra said...

Jackson I will be fine ;-) You should worry that I will be going solo on the JMT right after I climb Whitney, not that I am running 135 mile with a crew who will be there every mile ;-)