Runners set for London Marathon attempts

Dr David Babbs from St Mary's Medical Centre is in training for his first London Marathon
Dr David Babbs from St Mary's Medical Centre is in training for his first London Marathon
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MERCURY readers are entering the final stages of training as they prepare to take on the London Marathon on Sunday, April 22.

Dr David Babbs, a GP for more than 20 years at St Mary’s Medical Centre in Wharf Road, Stamford, has decided at the age of 55 to attempt his first marathon distance run.

David, of Lindsey Road, Uffington said: “I decided to do it this year for two reasons; firstly I feel that if I don’t do it this year I never will because I am getting too old.

“Secondly because it’s the Olympics this year. I am one of the volunteers, a 2012 Games Maker, and I thought it was a good time to run.”

David is running for Team PB, a joint venture between The Prostate Cancer Charity and Breast Cancer Care who have teamed up for the 2012 Virgin London Marathon.

David said: “I chose to run for Team PB because those are the two most common cancers in Britain and I think we all know someone who has been affected by one of them. It’s a very important problem.”

To sponsor David, visit

Kate Brookes, 45, from Church Lane in Manton, Rutland, will be is taking on the 26 mile challenge to raise funds for hospice charity Rainbows following the death of her dad, David Ayres, who died from a heart attack last September.

Kate, who runs for Leicester Coritanians Athletic Club, took part in last year’s marathon but admitted she had to do it again for her dad.

Kate said: “After crossing the finishing line at the London Marathon last year, I vowed that it was my first and last ever marathon, but here I am in 2012 with only a few weeks to go before I don my running shoes again for another 26 mile jaunt around our capital city.

“I want to do in my dad’s memory and it has spurred me on to train harder and more regularly to beat my time of last year and whenever it gets painful and tough I think of him and it gets me through.”

To sponsor Kate, visit

Oundle School pupil Barny Dillarstone, 18, from Herne Road, Oundle, will be running the 26 miles with his dad, Robert, 50, and brother, Jake, 20, to raise funds for children’s charity Barnardo’s.

The group have called themselves Team Dillarstone and are hoping to raise £5,000 for the charity.

The challenge has been a dream of Robert’s for nearly 20 years when he realised that due to their ages, he and his two sons would all be able to run together in the annual race.

He said: “Although I’ve really wanted to do this for many years, I never thought it would happen for many reasons. I’ve never run a marathon before and didn’t know whether I’d be up to it at the age of 50, my boys may not have been into sport and fitness and, moreover, getting a place for the London Marathon, let alone three places, can be very difficult, even with charities.”

To follow Team Dillarstone’s progress and to donate to the group, visit

And dental receptionist Vicky Old, 33 of Vine Street, Stamford will be embarking on her second marathon run on April 22 when she tackles the world famous Virgin London Marathon.

Her first marathon was in October, 2011 when she tackled the Rutland Water race.

Vicky said: “I am running in aid of Beating Bowel Cancer, because my dad’s best friend died from the disease and my husband’s uncle was also recently diagnosed.”

To sponsor Vicky visit