tonight on "nightline," the toughest, longest race on earth. young women locked in a breathtaking battle. all on the backs of the world's wildest horses. >> i'm okay! >> we travel to outer mongolia with two women determined to win. >> riding. >> there will be rivalries. friendships. and breakdowns. >> i think i am -- >> and it all end with a shocking twist. >> moeshgoh, my god. >> a special edition o
ever heard of takes place in kentucky forget everything you know about racing horses. because tonight we are taking you to the far reaches of outer mongolia to one of the toughest races of any kind in the world. 850 horses. over 600 miles. 30 extreme riders mostly women on the adventure of their lives. they say if you can complete the mongol derby you can do anything. and our special edition of "nightline" sends gloria rivera and producer alex waterfield to join the ride. >> reporter: it is a race like no other. the toughest most unforgiving insane horse race on earth. >> coming out of the last station. >> lauren, how do you feel right now? >> reporter: don't think, just go. they're tearing at high speed across the wild of outer mongolia. here to follow 30 extreme adventurers, attempting the
fearsome mongol derby. for the first time ever, most of them are women. >> i am riding. >> reporter: we came here to find out what it is that drives them, to put themselves through this? and what it takes to make it. ♪ we meet the racers here in a remote mongolian wilderness. ♪ >> reporter: you are a brave and hearty bunch. >> reporter: in a prerace ritual, organizer katie, raises a cocktail of fermented horse milk. >> tighten your girths and ride it look you stole it tomorrow. i am very excite ford you. >> reporter: among the competitors, three americans. >> endurance is in my blood. my father is an ultramarathoner. >> reporter: first devon horn, the 20-year-old hot shot from houston. convinced there is only one reason to beep here.
are you going to win this thing? >> yes. that's the plan. >> reporter: that's the plan. but as we and devon would soon learn, it's not about winning or even surviving. okay, about surviving but about something much more. >> a test to everyone and their horses to finish happy and healthy. >> reporter: there is a lifelong equestrian. at 55 she is one of the oldest contestants and has a secret reason for attempting this race. >> reporter: you have something to fight. >> i have had something to fight. >> reporter: do you feel comfortable sharing it with us? >> i would rather share after it is over. how is senate -- how is that? >> reporter: and there is tom, a friendly 23-year-old college grad who recently entered the work force. >> call it a quarter life crisis. a risk management analyst. >> reporter: are you out here? did you not manage that correctly? >> one thing i have learned about risk you have got to take them when you can. >> reporter: but that night, a
little too much eric throws off tom's sense of risk. he tries wrestling. mongolia's other favorite pastime. tom seems to have injured his shoulder, badly. and needs a medic. 6:00 a.m. race day. devon is first up and ready to go. other riders make their final preps. >> reporter: are you ready? >> yeah. i haven't made any alliances or promises to ride. if they can keep up they can ride with me. >> ready, ready to start. >> reporter: lynn is choosing a strategy teaming up with a young french woman sandra to ride together. >> reporter: tom is dealing with the aftermath of last night's antics. >> how bad is it? >> torn acm. ligaments in my shoulder. >> reporter: he grits his teeth and saddles up. with the final blessing by a buddhist monk. >> all right, riders!
let's do it! it's show time. and the riders are off. there is no marked trail no set path. riders have a crude map, gps and their guts to guide them. over the next few days they will charge their way through 25 check points. changing horses at each one. covering at least two marathons each day on their 620-mile journey. lucky for us the "nightline" team has a different kind of horsepower to get ahead of these extreme riders. devon. from day one devon has the lead. >> did you see any one? >> i didn't see a single person. >> reporter: first pick of the new horses, programs her gps and is off. the rest of the pack starts to arrive. including laura palmer. >> my horse already. it's not good news. can you hear that?
>> she is turned off by devon's bravado. >> i am here to win. if i don't finish in seven days i'm not going home. then comes tom, walking the horse. the bum shoulder now a real problem. >> wasn't the most comfortable ride. i will get more pain pills. i will be fine. there is more bad news. at each station a vet provide a thorough checkup on each horse. >> the first thing we check is the heart rate. need to be 64 or out of 64. >> reporter: a sign the horse may have been overworked. tom's group won't wait for him. and he doesn't want to ride alone. >> you get caught out by yourself at night. and you lose your horse, you are in the middle of nowhere with no one to help you. >> reporter: still sticking together.
lynn and sandra who have become fast friends. >> this is our home. >> reporter: they stay the night in the home of a local mongolian know mad. the next morning, the dreaded sound of rain. hello. >> reporter: we find laura at horse station two all smiles and ready to go. >> might be easier to smile. >> reporter: we are starting to discover that her rosie outlook makes her a fierce competitor. >> i am riding. we are headed straight up here into the mist. probably another storm. which i just love. i love rain. >> reporter: and some 40 miles ahead, devon is still solo. the rain seems to have shaken her confidence. >> everyone else is probably huddled up with tea in their sleeping bags and company and i am out here like and idiot riding alride
riding aa -- alone across the [ bleep ] prairie. we want to catch devon. she had drama when a rivalry is developing between her and a rider hot on her trail, laura from the uk. we zoom ahead to horse station 17 amazed to find laura riding in first. just after 8:00 p.m. she has minutes of riding time left before the daily 8:30 cutoff. laura, why not spend the night here tonight? >> i'll lose time. >> reporter: there is now a competitive edge to that quirky persona. >> uk/usa? >> absolutely. uk/texas. the rest of the usa is fine. >> reporter: with laura saddling up to leave. we see devon in the distance right now. >> reporter: devon its at the other side of camp. >> are you mad you lost your lead? >> how far ahead of me is she? she is right here. when devon sees laura. she does her own 180. ditching her go ate len man tra. >> if i get the chan-- ditching
it alone mantra. >> reporter: laura isn't tri interested in the offer or acknowledging her rival. >> i lost my maps. >> oh, no. >> i don't know how far she will get with 12 minutes. >> why would she leave with 12 minutes? >> for the lead. it could make a difference. >> reporter: i have just -- >> i have just ridden away from devon. i couldn't bear the thought of spending the night with devon making her comments. >> reporter: meanwhile tom is hanging tough. >> how is it going so far? >> much better today. hopefully it stays this way. >> reporter: riding 200 miles despite the searing pain in his shoulder. but then yet another derby fiasco. >> whoa. whoa. easy. easy. easy.
my horse bucks me off and took off back for the beginning of the herd. tom find his horse. alone again he decides enough is enough. >> i was hoping we would never have this conversation. i just don't think i can make it. just defeated. it sucks. >> reporter: lessons learned? >> don't wrestle mongolians before the start of the 650-mile horse race. >> reporter: tom becomes the sixth rider to quit the race. and it looks like lynn may be next. >> diarrhea. violent, awful. debilitating. >> reporter: lynn and sandra together the whole race now may have to split up. >> very sad. really sad.
>> reporter: when we come back, with only two more days to go, we find devon and laura in a battle royale that ends with an astounding finish line shocker. >> oh, my god! [ male announcer ] when it comes to doing what you love, more is better. that's why we designed the all-new nissan versa note, with more technology, to get you into, and out of, tight spots. and more space so that you always have your favorite stuff. and, just for good measure, an incredibly efficient 40 mpg highway. so that when you're doing more, you're spending less. the all-new nissan versa note. your door to more. now get a $139 per month lease on a 2014 nissan versa note. ♪
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that's...wifi friendly. february, 2013. a landmark transportation bill is up for consideration. even though it's backed by republican governor mcdonnell... ken cuccinelli joins tea party repupublicans to block the pla. but terry mcauliffe believes it's time to break through the gridlock in richmond. mcauliffe presses demoats to support the bill. and the bill passes. terry mcauliffe. putting virginia first. "i'm terry mcauliffe, candidate for governor, and i sponsored this ad." >> in six days into our epic
adventure, hundreds of miles away from the finish line. out of 30 competitors, 24 remain and they're dropping like proverbial horse flies. now choices what makes a winner in this, best ride, most strategic alliance or competitive spirit that just will not quit? every game time decision could be their last. and here again, gloria rivera. >> fine. >> reporter: welcome today six of the mother of all equestrian adventures, the mongol derby, devon and laura are locked in a battle over 600 miles of remote wilderness. both hoping to win the most grueling horse race on earth. one after the other, the mongol derby is taking riders down. just over half remain. including 55-year-old rider
lynn. lynn beat back the flu and she found sandra again. >> well, we are not filming our good-byes. ha-ha. no way. >> reporter: what started as a tactical alliance has become a deep bond. >> sandra is making me emotional. she has been like my little angel. she is taking care of me when i was sick. >> a miracle. >> reporter: meanwhile five horse stations ahead. it is neck and neck between devon and laura. both riding at a punishing pace. because with just two stations left today, only one will be champion. >> trying to stay ahead of laura. >> if you don't believe me. >> reporter: nerves shot they tell us to get lost. >> you guys need to leave me alone now. >> we are staying back. >> we race ahead to the finish line to await the winner of the mongol derby.
>> as of the last horse station it was really neck and neck. devon a few minutes ahead of laura. right now we could see any one coming down the stretch. >> yeah. >> there is a rider. a rider! >> it looks like devon. >> reporter: it is devon we see first. [ cheers and applause ] >> reporter: after seven days of grueling work it seems devon got what she came for. [ applause ] she can't wait to celebrate. >> reporter: you stormed in in this competition. and said i am here to win. it will be official. >> how is he doing? >> he is still t. you have plenty of time. >> daddy, i just won the mongol derby. they're reaming.
but then the vet has crushing news. >> a two-hour penalty. >> reporter: devon's horse isn't recovering. his heart rate too gh. >> oh, my god. a devtating two hour penalty its added to her finishing time. >> can you belize not fiplease ? >> reporter: laura arrives a few minutes later. >> whoa! >> laura. race headquarters confirms it. >> congratulations. >> laura is the winner of the mongol derby. within ear shots of her sobs. she is gracious. >> lucky, i got on some horses and managed to get away without any injuries. so i got here somehow. >> devon, i am so sorry. >> it is okay. congratulations.
>> i really feel for you, that is really unlucky. and unfair. you should have won. i was miles away. i was never going to got here. just the way things work out. i guess. okay. >> reporter: first place decided we find lynn and sandra at the last horse station ready to finish as a team. >> i did we would end up best friends or horrible enemies. i think it is going to be best friends. >> whoa! whoa! [ cheers and applause ] >> reporter: as promised they end the race the way they started it. hand in hand. if finishing this race seems to mean more to lynn than any one else, well it just might. remember that secret she didn't want to share with us at the beginning. well now she does. >> about three years ago i woke up and got up and fell over and they found i have what is called
a hole in your heart. i kind of shut down for six months. afraid to do anything. and then i just decided that -- you don't have to quit living because you have something wrong with you. a lot of it. >> reporter: devon is here to congratulate lynn with perspective on her heartbreak. >> the one crappie hour at the finish line did not diminish the week of work i put in to get here. what's done is done. you have got to roll on. you have got to be happy that you finished the mongol derby. >> reporter: for "nightline," gloria rivera in the mongolian step. >> what a ride. thanks to gloria rivera and producer alex waterfield for that. we'll be right back. humira has been proven to work for adults who have tried other medications but still experience the symptoms of moderate to severe crohn's disease. in clinical studies, the majority of patients on humira saw significant symptom relief, and many achieved remission.
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finally, day nine of the government shutdown is just begun. today proved the only common ground between party leaders is a willingness to hold blame-filled press conferences. since some republicans want to use the so-called debt ceiling as leverage, president obama warned today that if congress doesn't agree to pay the nation's bills in the next eight days interest rates could soar, social security payments could stop, and the economy could tank. >> if you are in knowing goeneg buying somebody's house. let's talk about the price that we will pay, if you don't give me the price i will burn down your house. >> the president said if there is unconditional surrender by republicans, he will sit down and talk to us. that's not the way the government works. >> so it grind on with an estimated cost of $8 billion to the u.s. economy so