Many Centurions have, over the years, taken part in the famous Nijmegen 4 Days March (Vierdaagse). This year was no exception. It was also a very special year being the 100th edition of the event.
Centurions spotted during the week were Chris Flint, Peter Hodginkson, Pete Addison, Sean Pender, Hans Rennie, A. Boertjes, Jack Rose (had a good chat with Jack on the road!!) plus all those doing the Lap of Honour (listed below).
The standard routes for the last few decades have been 30km, 40km and 50km - all dependant on age. This year, to mark the anniversary, the 55km route was reintroduced and to add a bit more of a challenge - 100 walkers were selected to take part in the Ereronde - the Lap of Honour.
Each evening, starting on the Monday, a group of 25 walkers set off from Nijmegen on a 50km lap of honour - surely the longest lap of honour ever! The pace was set at 6.1km per hour to ensure a return to Nijmegen by 3am the following morning - giving walkers an hour before the start of the "normal" days walk. Phew....
The lap of honour was in addition to the normal 4 days walk. For those who elected to walk the 55km route, over a 100 miles had been covered by the end of Day 2, Day 3 or Day 4.
Yes, I hear you say, but Centurions walk 100 miles in 24 hours. Well indeed they do. But this was no walk in the park. Some Lap of Honour participants were walking in teams which meant walking the pace of the slowest walker. Not easy. Whilst we all want the weather to be "nice" - temperatures of 32 degrees plus 80% humidity made it rather uncomfortable. Not to mention sharing the road with 50,000 other walkers....
An enormous amount of work went into organising the Ereronde. Thanks especially to Maaike Heethaar and Gijs den Ouden (Centurion) for making it a "once in a life time" experience. Gijs was very keen to ensure that as many Centurions as possible were represented (cheers Gijs!) Thanks also to the support team who kept everyone fed and watered throughout the week. And a special thank you to all the residents of all the towns and villages who stayed up all night to support the walkers. It could only happen in Nijmegen!
Needless to say, many Centurions were invited to be part of the Ereronde Celebrations. Below is a list of those known to be part of the Lap of Honour groups. (Apologies if you are not listed...)
Group 1 Monday/Tuesday Anne van Andel
Annie van der Meer
Group 2 Tuesday/Wednesday Karen Brogger
Group 3 Wednesday/Thursday Frans Leitjens (March Leader)
Group 4 Thursday/Friday
Remco de Bruin
Sandra de Graaf
Piet van der Kroft
Berthus van Ginkel
Not forgetting : Gijs den Ouden - Route coordinator