Congratulations to all runners who took part in the Bournemouth Marathon Festival on 4th and 5th October but particularly to those who ran for the John Thornton Young Achievers Foundation.
With 25 runners in Team JTYAF and entries in all adult races, it really was a fantastic weekend.
Starting off with the 'Supersonic 10K' on the Saturday afternoon, the JTYAF had Charlotte Holyoake, Steve Lugg, Julia Trehane, Helen Wedge and Gary Tyler in the starting line up. They all did amazingly well and must be congratulated on their achievements.
The 'Speed of Light 5K' set off at 7pm and many of the runners had really gone to town with glowies and fairy lights which made it quite a spectacle. Lorna Perry, Jessica Ousey, Patrick Allen, Linda Thornton and Gary Tyler carried the tourch for the JTYAF. Gary had completed the Poole Park Run, 5K, in the morning, the 10K in the afternoon and just thought he'd finish things off nicely with another 5K!
The following day saw the Half Marathon runners on the start line at 8am. With Iga Kozakiewicz, David Beardwood, Dominic Keeley, Darryll Brewer, Linda Burn and Hayley Hawthorne the JTYAF had an amazing line up. A Half Marathon is a tough challenge and some of our runners had travelled quite a distance to take part. Hayley came all the way from Yorkshire. Again, huge congratulations for a fantastic achievement to these amazing people.
Finally the ultimate challenge - The Marathon! Jules Sutton, Damon Lawrence, Ben Williams, James Barnes, Joe Barnett, Josh Coote, Alex Waddell, Rus Scagell, Jason Burch and Rob Doyle took it on for the JTYAF. What an inspiration these guys were. Joe, Rob, Ben, Josh and James were all taking part in their first Marathons but Jules was obviously no newcomer and came over the finish line with an incredible time of just over 3 1/2 hours! Jason ran the full 26.2 miles in a great time too even though he had completed a 12 hour rowathon just a few days earlier!
26.2 miles is a massive physical challenge, the course is hilly and even if your body is ready to go the distance, it is sheer courage and determination that gets you over the finish line. We were lucky to have Remedial Massage Therapist, Clare Hancock, to provide the team with a free massage treatment after their races which helped to reduce the effects of 26.2 miles on their aching limbs. A huge thank you to Clare and also to Jo Sinclair and Julie Tyler who were there to give our runners a morale boosting cheer. Thanks must also go to Up & Running who kindly supplied the goody bags for our runners. Well done to Team JTYAF - we can't thank you enough for your fantastic support.
Not only did Team JTYAF smash the Bournemouth Marathon Festival but they smashed their fundraising too. Almost £5000 has already been raised in sponsorship which is a fabulous tribute to their achievements. We'll update this article with the final figures in due course.