Seaton duo’s running challenge

PUBLISHED: 07:54 24 May 2016 | UPDATED: 16:28 31 May 2016

Rob Gibson (left) and  Paul Hawkins on the Isle of Wight

Rob Gibson (left) and Paul Hawkins on the Isle of Wight


Pair complete the Isle of Wight 106km race in less than 20 hours

A pair of determined Seaton runners have raised more than £1,500 for a medical charity after completing two punishing courses.

First, window cleaner Paul Hawkins and his pal Rob Gibson, both in their forties, took part in The Grizzly, at Seaton, completing the tough coastal race in 3hrs 35 mins.

But that was a gentle workout compared with the 106km Isle of Wight Challenge they took on next.

The event took place over 24 hours. Paul and Rob started at 9am, on Saturday, and completed the course just before 5am, on Sunday – a total of just under 20 lung-busting hours.

The two set off hoping to raise around £800 for research into motor neurone disease - a distressing condition that has touched both their lives. In fact, they have raised a fantastic £1,535.64 to date.

Paul said the 106km Isle of Wight race was just ‘hideous’.

“I’m not even mad keen on running – it was Rob’s idea to put our names down,” he said.

Paul’s mum Jenny said: “I am very proud of them. They have done a fantastic thing. This was a big step up from the Grizzly.”

Motor neurone disease (MND) causes rapidly progressive muscle weakness. Specifically, the disease affects nerve cells (motor neurons) that control the muscles that enable you to move, speak, breathe and swallow. The precise cause of MND and its disease process remains a complete mystery. Some researchers are looking into possible environmental triggers – such as exposure to toxins or electrical injury.

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