IT IS day eight of the Mongol Derby and Mount Isa woman, Camille Champagne has already covered 818.99-kilometres.
The 1000-kilometre endurance ride is testing riders as they travel across Mongolia changing semi-wild ponies every 40-kilometres.
Camille is currently in 11th position although this is not the final result, with riders in front of her having received fines for assistance.
Averaging at 6.16km/h Camille is still a strong participant in the competition and still in the running for a podium finish.
Day three of the Mongol Derby saw Camille in 20th position against 40 other riders. The weather wasn’t too nice as she had to sleep in the rain.
Day four she jumped to 8th position covering a lot of ground with some well behaved ponies.
Day five saw Camille leave station 17 with Peter Molony and take the alternative route which was longer and harder than the given route around the mountains.
Day six Camille left with a Manhattan lady called Marie Griffis but later saw herself riding with Peter Molony again as they left station 22 together.
Day seven saw the leading pack of Australian cattle rancher William Comiskey and Canadian lawyer Heidi Telstad leaving the final station (27) and heading for the finish line.Mexican Cowgirl Marcia Hefker-Miles riding in third. Camille left station 24 taking 11th position.
A short distance only separates the two leaders with less than 100-kilometres to go and is expected to finish the derby today.
Camille is off Linda Downs station located 225-kilometres south west of Mount Isa. She came to Australia nine years ago and has competed in endurance riding throughout her life.
“The longest distance I have competed is 400-kilometres but nothing like the Mongol Derby. In preparation for the derby I have ridden 1000-kilometres in three months along with running and cycling,” Camille said.
Before leaving Camille said she was nervous about competing.
“The derby is on semi-wild ponies that will be very challenging because you could get a horse that throws you off or plays up for the whole 40-kilometres,” she said.
“Also the riders get more exhausted along the journey and keep receiving fresh new horses.
“I have spoken to people who have competed before and a year or more later they remember it as one of the toughest things they have ever done.”
The Mongol Derby will conclude on August 14. You can track Camille and other riders live at www.theadventurists.com/mongol-derby-live-dashboard/