You did THE TRACK in 2015. What is your favorite memory in this competition?
[Rafael] The day of the start was exactly 12 months after a serious knee surgery, on the same day. I could not run for six months and for some people it seemed crazy that I started such a long race as the first one after recovery. But it was a must.
You was third until the last day and you finish fourth, 7 minutes later the french guy Patrick Cande. What was your feeling at the arrival?
[Rafael] I was tired and cold. I mean the start of the last stage about 127km was something special due to the 400km we already had done to this point. Very special.
Patrick did so good and clever on the last stage. We was waiting till the night came and than he was running a hard attack. The clever idea was to wait till darkness. It makes it not easier to follow him or I was to weak at the end after my long break in running. I don’t know…anyway Patrick is a good one and a fantastic runner! At the finish line: I was in a bad temper for some moments. I mean seven minutes on 527km!!!… it is nothing else than 1km difference.
Five minutes later we were stand together around the fire telling stories. Laughing and having fun. But the most emotional moment was to realize that I hold my promise to my six year old daughter: after the surgery I was expecting nothing about the result due to lack of training. At my departure to Australia I promised her not to walk a single step in this race. It was our secret and promise and I could hold it.
For you, with one word please to specify Canal Aventure spirit?
[Rafael] In one word? Are you crazy – I am 55 year old man. We did some races together. This is a good team …and I’ve really seen a lot in the last ten years and Mr Lollier: you are the man, who is finding solutions – even in difficult moments.
Thank you Rafael.