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Running for Russell

Posted on April 21 2010 at 10:22:06

Anna Horton, Karen Flowerdew and Caroline Green


Three village women are training to take part in the June Blenheim Triathlon to raise money for the cancer charity Melanoma Focus.

Anna Horton, of Tony’s Handyman in Barnt Green, Karen Flowerdew and Caroline Green have no previous triathlon experience.

“When we entered six months ago it seemed like a really good idea but with the event looming, it doesn’t seem so clever now,” says Anna. They are competing in memory of Russell Neale who died from skin cancer last September. Russell was well known around the village as one of the earliest runners with Barnt Green Chuggers.

Completing the Sprint Triathlon will be no mean feat – a 750m open water swim followed by a 20km bike ride finished off with a 5km run. 

The trio, who confess their fitness level was more coach potato than runner bean, have been training hard to learn how to ride racing bikes, and run faster. But the skill they have found most challenging was to master an efficient front crawl.

“The front crawl has been a nightmare,” says Karen. “Drowning in the middle of Blenheim’s lake seemed a strong possibility.”

Luckily, local swimming expert Mike Dickenson has stepped in to give the girls training. “Mike has the patience of a saint; not only has he three very poor swimmers to teach but getting us to stop chatting has been a real challenge,” Karen added.

Anyone who would like to sponsor the girls can either call in to see Anna at Tony’s Handyman or visit:
www.justgiving.com/doingitforrussell

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