Profile of Laurie Dexter Member of the Soviet/Canadian
Polar Bridge Expedition which skied from the USSR to the North Pole and on to Canada
across 1,800 kilometres of arctic ice. He is also an "ultra-marathoner", having
completed dozens of races of more than 80 kilometres (50 miles). Let Laurie show you the
kind of tenacity you need to succeed...
first two weeks of Laurie's Polar Bridge trek were agonizing. He was struck by a
debilitating series of painful injuries. Before long, he was in serious trouble.
Within 48 hours of leaving Siberia, he had frostbite on all
his fingertips. They blistered badly, then broke open, exposing super-sensitive bare
flesh. In no time, his fingers began to ooze pus. The pain was excruciating. Every
movement hurt, including grasping ski poles.
Shortly after, he got major foot blisters, one of which
covered almost half of the bottom of his left foot. After that, he pulled a muscle in his
right shin during a fall.
All of this, combined with the extreme cold, made it
impossible for him to sleep properly. His feet, legs and hands throbbed. His groin
produced periodic, stabbing pain. While the rest of the team members experienced most of
these ailments at various times, for some reason Laurie was struck by them all at once.
Accustomed, as a runner, to being one of the leaders, he was suddenly relegated to the
rear of the line of skiers...
remember that in triumph, you dont remember the agony...
..."I run 83 kilometres so I
can enjoy the 84th," Laurie says. "I don't enjoy the first 83, but I'm willing
to run them because the 84th is the important one. The reward is in finishing. Finishing
is what's important."
Laurie strode triumphantly across the
finish line just three minutes under eight hours. My heart went into my mouth. I felt a
tingle go up and down my spine. It was not the finish that moved me. It was all that had
At last, he stopped and looked at his
watch. For the longest time, he just stood there staring at it, silent and swaying. For
the first time in hours, he was alone not in pain, but in victory. He had won. He had