Gareth gets his century at 24 hour charity run
He ran 100 miles and smashed his fundraising target at this winter backyard ultra.
Mission accomplished for Gareth Copley-Jones who on Sunday 15 January, completed his 100 mile challenge in 24 hours and raised over £6,000 for a specialist Motor Neurone Disease (MND) Care Centre named after rugby player Rob Burrow. He had non-stop support from the local running community despite the conditions.
This event was Gareth’s toughest to date on challenging, hilly trails around Silverdale Country Park in the middle of winter. He ran the same 4.167 mile loop on the hour every hour through day and night – the equivalent of twice up Ben Nevis in elevation.
Gareth is no stranger to long distance having run 47.8 miles in February '22 on behalf of the Rob Burrow Centre for MND Appeal. A mileage many people would be proud of but the Silverdale RC man wanted to go further.
He decided on a backyard ultra at his old stomping ground of Silverdale Country Park with the goal of 24 laps, each one in 45 to 50 minutes, to conserve his energy. The choice of pace also meant people of all abilities could join him for a lap or two.
Colleagues from Silverdale RC and friends from other clubs kept him company as he ticked off the miles. HPR Coach John Danahay accompanied him for a few laps and was impressed (but not surprised!) by his strength and determination. Others acted as crew, providing food and drink to help him on his way, not forgetting their shouts of encouragement and applause.
There was plenty of applause at the end of his final lap and a hug from his daughter along with a gold star balloon to finish his challenge on a high.
Congratulations and other praiseworthy comments have been posted on social media in recognition of Gareth’s achievement. In return he and his wife thanked everyone for their support and sponsorship saying: “It’s testament to what a fantastic community we have and we couldn’t have done it without these wonderful people.”
Image courtesy of Sparkle Ruth.