Running above the clouds
The route was steep and slippery, but this difficult task didn’t prevent Stevie Kremer from climbing Madeira’s mountains with determination.
"I kept slipping over and over again” said the athlete that participated on the 2nd edition of the Ultra Sky Marathon Madeira. "But when I reached the top, everything was clear and the view was amazing, absolutely stunning !! We’re running above the clouds and it felt amazing !!”.
The female winner of the marathon also said that this is one of the reasons why she loves sky running: "We have access to the best landscapes of the places where we are running.”
55 kms for the very first time
Sky running isn’t new to this North American athlete. Since the past two years, she’s the winner of the sport’s World Series and she competes regularly in Colorado, USA (where she actually lives). But her love for this sport took her much further.
She started to compete in international competitions all over Europe four years ago, when she was living and working in Italy. "I consider myself a lucky woman for having the chance of running in so many places.”
Some of her favourite spots were Rio de Janeiro, Matterhorn and Interlaken, in Switzerland. From this last one, she keeps a very special memory: "I’ve won the Jungfrau Marathon and it was totally unexpected”, she underlines, explaining "I was feeling absolutely no pressure when I started the race, but at the end my father was at the arrival. It felt so unexpected that it ended up being my very first victory.”
While she was going to the departure point in the Madeiran’s race, she was feeling nervous and excited at the same time: "I’ve never run 55 km’s before, so I was very nervous and kept thinking If I could reach the end.”
And she did !! She was the 10th to cross the finish point, 7 hours and half after the departure and the first woman to get there from the female participants. She shared the arrival with her husband Marshall that was also running next to her.
The challenge was completed with success, but she stills consider that "it was a very difficult run, specially because of the slippery and steep ups and downs.”
Stevie also said that she felt an amazing support from the people of Santana’s city while she was running through the island’s highest point, Pico Ruivo, and places like the Laurissilva forest, Boaventura, São Jorge, Ilha, Queimadas and Santana. "People kept cheering and applauding for us and it was an incredible feeling to pass the checking points and feel the support from the people that was watching. Even the other participants were amazing !!”
“Madeira is beautiful.”
"This is such a beautiful island !!” Stevie Kremer said. Her family that lives in Germany, is familiarized with the island and told her that it was "the” perfect holiday destination for German people.
The 5 days she spent there ended up passing to fast . .. When it was time to go back to Colorado, she admitted that she didn’t wanted to leave the island and her hotel room. "My stay at Porto Mare was simply amazing, I wish that I could stay there a little longer.” She’s excited to come back, adding that "I would love to come back next year !!”
Relaxing at Porto Mare.
After the marathon, Stevie Kremer highlights how good it felt to come back to her hotel bed. The stay at Vila Porto Mare resort was one of the moments of greater relaxation while she stayed in the island. "My family that comes many times with me also loved the hotel and the island.”
If you want to learn more about the race: http://www.madeiraskyrunning.com/?lang=en.
The photos featured in this article belong to Paulo Abreu and João Clode.