What made you want to run ultras?
I have always loved running, long distances and at a slow pace, and outside. I did my first trail in 2017, the UT4M challenge (Grenoble, French Alps), a bit like a tourist (first day in road running trainers and long pants plus a bag that was not adapted...) and I really enjoyed it. A few months later I was lucky (or unlucky) to win a race number for the diagonale des fous at the Grand Raid of the Reunion and I had 8 months to train from being able to run a flat 100km which was the maximum i'd ever ran at the time, to a hard 165km with a 10000 meter climb, and I was living near Paris at the time. The race didn't go very well, but I still managed to finish in a lot of pain and above all, despite all the difficulties I had loved this experience and this race format.
What is your favorite ultra race and why ?
The TOR des Géants, first of all, because on such long distances, you're not out for a race but for an adventure. You are never sure of finishing and of what will happen. Also this race, in addition to being magnificent and mythical, is also of a high level and you can really measure yourself against the best on XXL distances. And we eat very well, which is a very important point for me !
Your top 3 training tips for ultra?
- Running. A lot, a lot, a lot, a lot! But at a low intensity so you don't get hurt. You have to learn to enjoy running slowly
- Do muscle strengthening (and yes, even if you don't like it and it's boring): it helps to develop power, but above all it is essential to prevent injuries
- Practice lots of sports : cycling, swimming, walking...there is more to life than running and everything can potentially be useful, except staying sat on your couch
Your TOP 3 RAIDLIGHT products for the ultra and why ?
- The waterproof kit : ULTRALIGHT 2.0 pants and jacket: honestly, you won't find lighter and more protective in case of rain. And considering the space and weight it takes, I never hesitate to ask myself if I should take them, it's always yes !
- The Ultralight 24l or 12l bag : ultralight, well adjustable, practical, the 12l goes with me on all my ultras up to 100 miles, the 24l on all the races of more than 170km.
- The Made in France 3/4 tights. Very light and pleasant to wear, I tested and validated them on all my ultras and backards, I can stay hours (days) in it without any rubbing or discomfort, and fill the back pocket with cereal bars and crackers, great !
What is the ultra of your dreams in the world ?
I would like to do Western State or Hardrock one day. I'll have a decent chance of being drawn for a race number over the next 6 years, so I'll wait a little longer.
What are your next ultra goals ?
After the UTMB at the end of august, 'll have 3 weeks to recover and and give it everything with the french team at the 24h european championships in Verona. Mid october will come the Backyard world championships, where the objective will remain the same. And a few days later if all goes well, I'll be normally on the Diagonale des Fous, trying to do better than the first time (which should not be too hard)
Who helps you at the refreshment stops and what is the most important thing he/she helps you with ?
I never have assistance. I manage on my own at the refreshment stands and I'm quite proud of that.
What is the worst moment you experienced during an ultra, and what is the best ?
On the transgrancanaria 360, I found myself during the night in a rain storm, lost during one hour in the same place. Impossible to find my way, I literally had to force my way through cactus fields, and I was soaked to the bone, and the change of clothes in my bag too. I thought for a long time to call the SOS on my gps to ask for help because I was getting colder and colder, plus my gps watch was almost out of battery, and I felt almost in danger of death. Fortunately, I finally found the right road and reached the life base where I shivered for half an hour.
What goes through your mind a few seconds before a race starts and what are your first thoughts after crossing the finish line ?
Before the start of a race I usually don't think about anything , I just enjoy the atmosphere of the start and the calm before being under pressure for several hours or days. After crossing the finish line, I am usually very happy, whatever the performance, because in our sport to go to the end is already a victory ! And then I look for a place to take a nap !
How many ultras have you run while wearing RAIDLIGHT ? Or since when ?
I've been sponsored by raidlight since March 2021, but it's the brand I've worn since I started trail running.