Clarion Gaming’s James King runs Sahara ‘ultra-marathon’ for Mencap charity

Clarion Gaming’s Sales Director James King is undertaking the challenge of a lifetime as he swaps Putney for the Sahara to compete in the Marathon des Sables.

The Discovery Channel has ranked the race as the ‘toughest footrace on earth as competitors attempt to complete a course of 156 miles across the Sahara in 50 degrees centigrade across six days. In layman’s terms that’s 5 and a half marathons and you have to carry everything you’ll need in your backpack whilst making the gruelling journey. James has 14-months of intense training under his belt but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy.King 

King told “With just over 1,000 runners taking part, my goal is to finish within the top 250 overall and in the top 50 on the final race day. There’s no doubt that it’s a massive challenge and one that will push me to my very limits, both physically and mentally.”

It’s the 21st iteration of the now famous race, with Moroccan competitor Lahcen Ahansal having won ten titles. His brother, Mohammed Ahansal also has two titles to his name – consider them the extreme version of the Brownlee brothers. They complete the 156 mile course in approximately 19-20 hours. The fastest time recorded by a Brit was Ian Sharman’s 13th position and 25 hours and 13 minutes completion time in 2008.

The sheer pain of competing won’t be for nothing though. King is raising money for Mencap, the charity that works with those with learning difficulties in the UK. He’s come close to reaching a staggering £20,000 which is nearly double his target.

King revealed to industry news source “I’ve been truly humbled by the generosity of the industry and by the support of my colleagues at Clarion which has been immense. I set a target of £10,000 and to be close to doubling that sum knowing  how important funding is and what it will mean to Mencap is fantastic.”

To donate, visit James King’s’ fundraising page at :