First U.S. Team to Compete in The Libyan Challenge

January 27, 2009 · Written by · Filed Under Running Teams 
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The Libyan Challenge
After decades of difficult relationship, Libya and the U.S. came together in 2008. This allowed to create a team of American runners who would participate in one of the most extreme desert ultramarathons, The Libyan Challenge. TLC is a non-stop and self-supported 120 miles run across The Libyan Desert aided only by GPS. The event will kick off on February 24 and may be followed on the official website and maps and further information – including a past edition race report – is available on the U.S. team site. Below, a short description of the team members:

The Libyan Challenge U.S. Team Members

Howard Cohen
Howard will be leading the first U.S. Team at the Libyan Challenge. Howard has competed in over 50 Ultramarathons including eight 100 mile runs. In the summer of 2008 he completed the Hardrock 100 Endurance run in the mountains of Colorado. Howard enjoys running in the desert whether it is in the United States running an ultra or completing in the Gobi March and Atacama Crossing with Racing the Planet in recent years. Howard also enjoys biking, hiking and mountaineering. Covering long distances light and fast is just one of his passions.

Rebecca Byerly
Rebecca Byerly, began running ultra-marathons, while studying abroad in Cairo, Egypt in 2005. Since that time she has run marathons or ultra-marathons in Egypt, South Africa, Jordan, Australia, Lebanon, India, China, and Mongolia. Always seeking the next athletic and cultural adventure she spent last winter snowboarding in Gulmarg, Kashmir and running at 14,000 feet through the Himalayas. Rebecca, uses running and writing as a medium to share the remarkable accounts of people in far-flung regions of the world, whose stories would otherwise go untold.

Isabella de la Houssaye
A mother of five and former wall street lawyer and banker, Isabella de la Houssaye is thrilled to be joining the first U.S. team to race the Libyan Challenge. She started racing four years ago and since has completed five Ironman Triathlons and a significant number of marathons and ultramarathons including third place finishes in the Coastal Challenge in Costa Rica, the Cruce de los Andes in Argentina and Chile and a second place finish in the Machelhose in Hong Kong. Most recently she ran the 200k Cape Odyssey in South Africa. Her physical and mental endurance is a product of years of chasing after her children and managing investment bankers.

Bob Lashua
Bob Lashua is 45 years old and resides in Massachusetts. A lifelong runner who has completed eight marathons on three continents. The most challenging by far was the Great Wall Marathon which he ran in May of 2008. He has a Master’s Degree and has recently retired, after twenty-five years of service, from the Massachusetts Department of Correction. Other interests beyond running include travel, cooking, reading (usually true stories about the human spirit and the will to survive), photography, and weight training. Bob is well balanced and always looks to find the humor in whatever situation he may find himself in.

Update [01/28/09]: Note the team has already sponsorship from Green Layer and Hammer Nutrition and is looking for more sponsors to support them on this event.

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