Earlier this month, D. Lynne Gilbert, a 2001 Adult Degree Program alumna, placed 10th along with her partner Sandra Fretelliere of France in the 1,000-kilometer 2013 Mongol Derby, certified as the longest and toughest horse race in the world by the Guinness Book of World Records.
The international contingent of 35 riders who started the race were allowed 5 kilograms of gear from start to finish, navigated by GPS and maps, and lodged and dined with Mongolian families in their gers (living quarters) along the way. Every 25 miles, Gilbert picked a new semi-wild Mongol horse to ride on the next leg. Lynne rode 26 different Mongol horses during the 625-mile race and crossed the finish line in sixth place at around noon on the ninth day but due to a time penalty was placed 10th overall.
“My goal was to finish within the 10 days allowed, not get hurt, and be in the top 10,” said the Raphine resident. “I’m delighted to have achieved all my goals.”
At 55, Lynne was the oldest rider in the race this year. Only 18 of the 35 starters finished. For more on Gilbert’s adventure, see her story in The News Leader.