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Hardest Geezer reveals which country was hardest to run through during historic journey across Africa

Hardest Geezer reveals which country was hardest to run through during historic journey across Africa

Russ Cook, who ran the equivalent of 385 marathons in 352 days, has also opened up on the most frightening moment.

The self-proclaimed 'Hardest Geezer' has opened up on the hardest country he ran through during his remarkable journey across the length of Africa.

Russ Cook, from West Sussex, completed one of the greatest sporting achievements of all time on Sunday afternoon, when he finished running the length of Africa.

The 27-year-old, who has raised more than £600,000 for two charities – the Running Charity and Sandblast – began his 9,941 mile-journey in the most southern point, Cape Agulhas in South Africa, on 22 April 2023.

He crossed 16 countries in total, including Namibia and Nigeria, before reaching Tunisia's Ras Angela on April 7, 2024.

Image credit: Getty
Image credit: Getty

So what was the hardest country to run through? "It's a good question," he said on The Stomping Ground podcast. "There were quiet a few tough ones. I'd say Congo. That was really tough."

Cook was kidnapped in the Congo by a gang armed with machetes.

And shortly after finishing his challenge, the 27-year-old revealed his most frightening moment, when he went missing and was separated from his supporters for days in the jungle.

He was eventually freed after villagers armed with machetes were paid off.

“The scariest moment was in the Congo, when I was on the back of a motorbike, thinking I was about to die, getting driven into the jungle," he told reporters. "That was pretty nuts."

"Probably for about one minute I thought about quitting, and then I realised I couldn’t, so that was about as close as it got.”

Cook also revealed that his team were robbed at gunpoint in Angola.

"There's obviously been a bunch of times where it was very difficult," he added. "Sahara desert, sandstorms, pushing that mileage up for the last couple of months was really tough as well.

"But I was never gonna quit - just got to get it done and the only way out is the end."

So what's next? "I will pick up the training again soon," he says. "My body is in a hell of a state. It needs fixing up first."

Featured Image Credit: YouTube/The Stomping Ground - Getty

Topics: Athletics