Well, what can I say Saturday 15th July 2017 will go down in history for the Connaughton family as a remarkable day of personal achievement for me and my son James.
Arriving at Bannatyne’s Ingleby Barwick at 6.45am to start our 1.2-mile swim towing James in a dinghy proved to be very enjoyable completing it in 48 minutes. A quick change and we were off on the bikes with several friends supporting us on the route, to do our first 3.6 miles of the 56-mile bike ride starting at Stockton’s sportive cycling event on the riverside at 9 am. Thanks go to Richard Williamson of Velo 29 events for making it happen and having us as their special guests.
Just as we set off on our bikes and James connected to me with his specially adapted trike the heavens opened up and due to safety reasons James had to be taken off after 4.5 miles, we picked him back up with 2.5 miles left to go.
On reaching the finishing line there was only the final leg to do a 13.1 mile half marathon. Well, what can I say Saturday 15th July 2017 will go down in history for the Connaughton family as a remarkable day of personal achievement for me and my son James.
All our supporting cyclists changed with a team of supporting runners apart from my friend and work colleague James Smyth who was sticking to my side for both parts. Three miles into the run and my Achilles injury I had picked up the previous Sunday on my last training run, kicked in and brought me to my knees along with some tears. Rather than give up the team supported me to hobble the remaining 10 miles in agony. With only 500 m left my son James joined me in his wheelchair and we crossed the line as a team with all our friends, family and supporters waiting to greet us, a truly emotional moment and one I will cherish for the rest of my life.
I did the event to show that at 51 years old I wasn’t past it and to help raise the profile and funds for James JPC Community Farm project. I’m pleased to announce with a few sponsors left to collect we are hoping we’ve raised nearly £6360.