Local runners set for marathon test

Ben Blowes
Ben Blowes

As if completing the 26 miles of the London Marathon isn’t enough of a challenge, Ben Blowes is attempting to set a new world record by doing it with a tumble dryer strapped to his back.

Forty-four-year-old roofing company boss Ben, from Gazeley, is already a veteran of some 30 marathons and races up to 100 miles, but carrying the 25kg kitchen appliance around the capital will test even his resolve.

He is part of a team of runners raising funds for Newmarket-based charity Racing Welfare and will be trying to complete the course in a record time of under six hours. Also included in the nine-strong team are Hugh Anderson, managing director of Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin Racing operation, Jane Petrucci, who runs the Sports Injury Clinic at Fordham, Alex Cairn who works for Godolphi and Sam Butler-Spelzini, head groundsman at Huntingdon racecourse.

From Fordham, 56-year-old Alan Bayes will be taking part in his third London Marathon and is asking people who visit his charity page at www.justgiving.com/Alan-Bayes to guess his finishing time, he will give £20 to the nearest estimate as well as raising money for Multiple Sclerosis in memory of his late uncle Eric, who suffered from the condition. James Hewitt is taking on the marathon challenge to raise funds for the Mildenhall-based Blerch Sporting Foundation, set up by Sue Lyes in memory of her sporting mad son Chris Merchant who was just 28 when he died in a car crash in 2015. James has raised more than £800 so far and donations can be made at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/BlerchSF-JamesHewitt-Marathon-2017

Twenty-five-year-old Gemma Manchett, assistant manager at Manchetts in Newmarket, has raised more than £2,900 so far for Whizz-Kidz. She was inspired to take part after watching last year’s event go to https://whizz-kidz-london-marathon17.everydayhero.com/uk/gemma