Picture of Andy in training for Challenge66 in Leeds.
66 Ultra Marathons ● 66 Days ● 66 Cities
Perhaps I am getting older but these days it is rare that I discover something and am seriously impressed.
This last weekend I met a man by chance here in the Corn Exchange in Leeds city centre and I was seriously impressed. In my twenties I was even then not often impressed, I had a been there, done it attitude and serving overseas in the British military I had been there and done it. But this Saturday in Leeds I met Andy McMenemy running on a treadmill in preparation for a challenge that is almost beyond imagination.
Andy McMenemy is one serious runner and he will next month in March 2011 begin what I would think is the ultimate challenge for any endurance runner, to run 66 ultra marathons in 66 consecutive days from each of the 66 official UK cities.
Now this is where the CDP community could come into its own, Andy will run 6 in Scotland, 5 in Ireland, 5 in Wales and 50 in England. Many of the cities that Andy will run in are home to a City Daily Photo blogger, by chance my city Leeds is the first in the schedule on Wednesday 16 March. The next day Andy runs in Bradford home to Martin and his Bradford, My Town blog and the next day he goes off to run in Hull which is covered by Hull and Hereabouts by Billy B.
Now to the most important point about this endeavour, Andy will be running ultra marathons in the 66 official cities across the United Kingdom over 66 days raising money for ABF The Soldiers Charity. My younger sister lives in Wootton Bassett an unremarkable little market town in Wiltshire. I doubt that there will be many readers of this article that do not know why I mention that my sister lives in Wootton Bassett but for those who do not know I suggest a search through Google videos with Wootton Bassett as the search term.
When I journey around Yorkshire it is difficult to believe that we are engaged in a war in a far off country. Now whether or not you believe in the cause or indeed the war is beside the point, our young men and women are out there right now! This is just as our young men and women have always been out there, wherever there was at that time. I served, I wore the uniform with pride and was not often in harms way, today right now it is very different, the enemy do not take prisoners, there are no taleban human rights activists or lawyers.
Andy has chosen to support ABF The Soldiers’charity who are there for Soldiers with lifetime support whether they be serving soldiers or veterans. Andy (the son of a former soldier) and his small team have a great website all about his task called Challenge66
I think that this is a good cause and one that needs all the help it can get, thats why I have written this today and I will write more as and when I get more info.
So what can the CDP community do, firstly perhaps like Martin and Billy B this challenge will be coming soon to your city or maybe not too far away, perhaps you could catch Andy on one of his runs. It would be nice if you could look up your city on the Challenge66 schedule and give it some promotion by mentioning it on your blog, this would help to get people there to cheer Andy on and hopefully donate something too. Even if you do not have Andy coming to your city please could you mention the nearest one to you with a link to the Challenge66 site and date of the run.
Thanks for reading this and I look forward to reading and seeing pics of Andy in the various cities of the UK. Paul