Runners hope to conquer London Marathon this weekend

Runners are hoping to conquer the London Marathon this weekend – for causes that are close to their heart.

By Tim Edgley
Friday, 26th April 2019, 5:37 pm
Updated Friday, 26th April 2019, 5:43 pm
Christina Dove, from Emsworth
Christina Dove, from Emsworth

Among the 40,000 runners in Sunday’s race will be three from this area hoping to complete the 26.2-mile course.

Christina Dove, 52 from Emsworth is also raising money. Her fundraising page, with colleague Claire Skinner, has already exceeded its £4,000 target.

Christina is a global programme manager at Mercer in Chichester and is raising money for The British Red Cross.

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Richard O'Sullivan

Christina said: ‘I try to do something every year. In 2017 I cycled from Land’s End to John O’Groats, and last year I completed the Ride London 100 event. I thought I’d have a change from cycling and give the London Marathon a go. It’s certainly the hardest challenge I’ve ever done.’

Dr Claire Spice, 50, who works at QA hospital is running in memory of her mother who died from severe lung disease. Her charity of choice is the British Lung Foundation.

Claire said: ‘I’ve raised £1,963 so far and I’m so grateful for the support from friends, family and colleagues. I’ve had a lot of support. My target is £2,000. I’ve been training since January and it’s been tricky trying to fit it all in.’

‘I’ve been doing about 20 to 35 miles a week recently but I injured my knee a few weeks ago.

Christina Dove

I’m not a seasoned runner and I haven’t done a run like this in 10 years but I’m aiming to finish the marathon in 4 and a half hours.’

Another runner is Richard O’Sullivan, 40, a chief petty officer from Portsmouth Naval Base, who in 2007 was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. He’s been taking chemotherapy tablets for five years and says they have given him his life back. He is running the marathon to raise money for CLIC Sargent.

Richard said: ‘I have run two half marathons, the Great South Run and have been selected in the ballot to race the London Marathon. Through all of this I have had endless support and encouragement from my beautiful wife, Rebecca.’

‘I have chosen to raise money for CLIC Sargent so that money raised will go to helping children suffering from this horrible illness. My friend’s son, Sam, nine, was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour so I understand what families go through.’

To donate to any of these runners just go to the links below.