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From athletics to ultra trail


 

I started cycling in Châtellerault (Vienne, France), in Sebastien Chavanel’s club. At 6-7 years old, I won regional races, I liked it but I was bored. Athletics came by chance, with the school’s cross. I finished third and I felt good in running. So I stopped cyclist for athletics with Philippe Merlier, my coach. When I was young, I did great time in 1000m (2min50), then I turn on 800m (1min56), 1500 (3min56) and 3000 steeple (9min15). 

   

To my studies, I prepared a biologic and technology exam, I had to stop the sport in competition, and I went to work to Marineland in Antibes (06, France), in the research department. Then, I joined the French army and more particularly the Alpine special army where I climbed few 30 top of mountains, for 45 000m D+.

I went back to the sport in Saint Jeannet near Nice (06) via climbing. Gradually, I was running to different spots, to ultimately devote myself to my new passion, trail running.

 
In June 2001, I'm signing up to 50km’s trail with 2800m D +, while I did not run for eight years and not more than 10 km. 

During this trail at Mont Férion, I had a lesson in humility. I had 0 experience, I left with refreshment homemade. I had crushed almonds and walnuts, which I mixed with milk. It was my gel. Obviously I had intestinal problems! But no way to stop, I finished 18th in 6:06. I could not even walk, I fell asleep in my car without realizing it.


I learned from those mistakes, and I stayed over distances of 20 to 30 km, working the basics such as VMA, thresholds sessions, educational ... I joined a few long trail such as the crossing of the Alps and the Verdon. I participate in the former UTMB in 2003.
  

The switch to the Ultra is in 2005, for the diagonal des fous at the island of Reunion. I finished third behind two Reunion. In 2006 and 2007, I run UTMB but I make mistakes equipment the first year, the second I was overtrained, motivation was not there.

 
In 2008, I finished with the UTMB Pascal Blanc, at a great edition to two shared. You end up 20th. This remains a great memory. The Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc 2009 was a special edition, my goal was the diagonal des fous, but I felt so good on that UTMB, I wanted to beat my record. I finished second, behind Jornet, and before Kabou, who became my friends.

 

Now i am in at  top of my physical form, i am glad to run with friend, with my wife and my children around me. They are the most important for me and for help me to keep my performance.