Marathon challenge inspired by little Seb, 4

Simon Whitmore
Simon Whitmore
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A RUNNER has been inspired to tackle the London Marathon by the bravery of a four-year-old who has leukaemia.

Simon Whitmore will be running the 26 -mile course around the capital on April 17 to help children’s charity, CandleLighters. The charity has provided invaluable support and help to four-year-old Seb Murphy who is fighting the disease.

Seb is the son of Simon’s friends Ben and Helen, who live in Leeds.

Simon, who lives with wife Emma and their two children Lilly, five and one-year-old Sam, in Sweetbriars, Stamford, wanted to help the charity.

He said: “It is difficult to imagine how awful it is when your four-year-old son is going through something like that.

“CandleLighters have given invaluable support to our friends and their poorly little boy and do amazing work in supporting families of children with cancer.

“It is a terrible thing for anyone to go through. Families in this situation rely on support and help they can get.”

Simon is no stranger to marathons and already has three under his belt.

The 37-year-old tackled London in 2002 and Stockholm a year later and then completed a marathon in Paris last year.

He is hoping to cross the finish line on The Mall in 3hr 50min after completing the Paris event in 4hr.

Simon’s training is already well under way and is doing daily runs with a longer one at the weekend.

He said: “Training is going okay so far.

“I think London is one of the greatest supported events. It’s fantastic with the crowds.”

If anyone would like to support Simon go to: www.justgiving.com/Simon-Whitmore

Another runner, Tim Artus, 38, is looking to beak a world record on the day by carrying a 40lb backpack.

Tim, of Stephenson Way, Bourne, was inspired to take on the challenge to raise money for the RAF Benevolent Fund and so far has raised £1,500.

Tim, who is a flight lieutenant in the RAF, said: “The current record is four hours and 42 minutes and I believe I will break four hours.”

Tim has been training hard for the challenge since September with runs around town, at work and in Bourne Wood.

Bristol-born Tim said: “I have regularly run 21 miles with full weight and boots, and look to be running 24 to 26 miles prior to the race.”

Tim has completed eight marathons including the London event five times. His best marathon time is two hours and 35 minutes.

To sponsor Tim visit www.uk.virginmoneygiving.comTimArtus or e-mail him at tim.artus@cranwell.raf.

mod.uk to arrange sending a cheque.