Darron Jones the Revenant winner

Conquering the Revenant

In the world of endurance challenges, the Revenant Ultra Run stands tall as a true test of human grit, pushing athletes to their limits amidst the rugged Southland high country. Proudly sponsored by Volkswagen, this ultra-endurance race tests navigation and endurance both physically and mentally.

Scott Worthington, the mastermind behind the Revenant, says “almost all of the competitors come to the race knowing that their chance of finishing is slim to none.”

Among the elite few who have conquered the Revenant is Darron Jones, a seasoned athlete with an impressive track record in endurance sports. We caught up with Darron to get a glimpse into the heart and soul of this extraordinary race.

How do you get in the mindset to tackle the Revenant?

Darron: Going in with a relaxed, open mind and just looking to have fun helps. It’s easy to get wound up and put too much pressure on yourself.  

What’s your favourite source of fuel on the course to keep you going?

Darron: Lots of treats! Food you look forward to is usually savoury or fresh - you get sick of sweet things quickly in long events. Watermelon and salmon were fantastic. I also used Naked Tailwind which gives you all the electrolytes you need but with no flavour. There were also heaps of wild Snow Berries around the course which were tasty.

Congratulations on completing the Revenant. Was there any point throughout the race you wanted to give up. What got you through?
Darron: There were two times during the revenant when I thought this is impossible – one was during the first lap and the second was coming into the transition at the end of Lap 3. The support and comradery from other runners (mainly Fynn) and supporters were priceless. Fresh socks and a full belly did wonders as well.

How did you celebrate your win?
Darron: Scott put on the best BBQ and beers afterwards and it was great to chat and hear everyone else’s stories from the event. Fantastic atmosphere!

What’s involved in your training to prepare for the Revenant?

Darron: Runs with lots of ups and downs on rough terrain. I entered the event 3 weeks before so didn’t have much time for specific training. In saying that, I had just completed the Australasian Rogaine Champs in Tekapo so that was fantastic training.

Top tip for anyone considering ultra running?

Darron: Have fun! If it’s not fun, make it fun. Find some friends to share it with. Find a place you love to run. I just love getting out the door on a run, especially if it involves getting into the hills, into the bush, into wild, rugged beautiful places. We are incredibly lucky in NZ. Don’t get me wrong, there is always some hurt, some lows, and it is never easy but afterwards the feeling of satisfaction and happiness, you can’t beat.

Want to learn more about the Revenant?
Discover more hereOpens an external link