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Rochester man, 75, to run 135 miles in 3 days in 50C Death Valley heat

By Abdul Nisar

London, July 7 (ANI): A 75-year-old man from Rochester has signed up to run 135 miles in three days in the scorching heat of California's Death Valley to help raise money for Cerebral Palsy Care.

Jack Denness will run the stamina-sapping miles in the Badwater Ultramarathon, which has been billed by its American organisers as the "world's toughest foot race".

Denness, a grandfather, who has completed the route almost a dozen times, says a person has to be literally mad to run the race, as the road temperatures can get up to 140 degrees Fahrenheit.

He already holds the record as the oldest man to complete the course, securing it as a sprightly 70-year-old back in 2005.

Denness usually sleeps for no more than five hours during the entire race, keeping his energy levels up with dried fruit, nuts, energy bars and sports drinks.

And before long, the mind starts to play tricks and hallucinations are common, but Denness says he looks forward to them, as they "break the race up a bit".

"One time, I was totally knackered from heat exhaustion and I could hear this fellow behind me. I looked round and it was the Devil," the Independent quoted him as saying.

"He was all red, he had the horns and the tail and the trident. I looked at him, he looked at me, and we laughed at one another. Then he'd jump behind a rock or a tree. It kept going for about half an hour. It was great!" he added.

Each of the 90 competitors from all over the world mad enough to make the journey to Death Valley must arrive with a support team, which trails runners with energy drinks and cold water sprays.

Runners must complete the course within 60 hours to be in with a chance of bagging a medal, but the clock doesn't stop for nightfall. (ANI)

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