Hastings runners complete ‘gruelling’ relay challenge in aid of London hospital

Twelve runners were given an emotional welcome home as they completed a gruelling 460-mile charity relay.

The Heart & Sole Running Group members arrived back in the town on February 26 to an audience of more than 240 schoolchildren, parents and supporters outside Sandown Primary School on The Ridge.

Heart & Sole runners took on the Relay of all Relays for the Royal Marsden Hospital. Photo by Jo Smith. SUS-190403-103909001

Heart & Sole runners took on the Relay of all Relays for the Royal Marsden Hospital. Photo by Jo Smith. SUS-190403-103909001

The challenge saw the 12 runners running in relay 24 hours a day, taking in the counties of Kent, London, London City, Surrey, Wiltshire, Hampshire, Dorset, West Sussex and East Sussex.

Each runner completed two legs each day of between five and nine miles in a continuous relay, with a 12-hour break between each leg.

More than £7,000 has so far been raised for the Royal Marsden Hospital. During the relay a stop was also made to deliver boxes of PlayDoh for the kids currently under treatment at the Hospital.

Race director and organiser Lee Cote said: “This was a ground-breaking event for the distance and format.

Heart & Sole runners took on the Relay of all Relays for the Royal Marsden Hospital. Photo by Jo Smith. SUS-190403-103858001

Heart & Sole runners took on the Relay of all Relays for the Royal Marsden Hospital. Photo by Jo Smith. SUS-190403-103858001

“I purposely designed the route and format to be highly demanding and test the physical abilities of individuals, as well as test the mental strength of each runner. I took everyone completely out of their comfort zones and they now realise that the body is a powerful thing that can adapt to all scenarios as long as you focus your mind on the task.

“The runners, ate, slept and administrated themselves while travelling on buses from point to point and this took its toll severely in the fact that sleep time was about two to three hours a day, but every runner gave 100 per cent commitment to what they needed to do.

“They worked as a team to achieve the final goal and every single one of them has made me proud and privileged to have decided to organise the event and lead them on this journey and watch them succeed.”

The runners completed the Relay of all Relays in 3.25 days having set off on February 23.

For details, visit http://www.heartandsolerunning.co.uk/home.

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