Today and tomorrow two very good friends of mine, James and Helena Smith are taking part in one heck of an adventure race in New Zealand. This is the Speight’s Coast to Coast multi-sport race. The Speight’s Coast to Coast traverses the South Island of New Zealand from Kumara Beach on the Tasman Sea to Sumner Beach on the Pacific Ocean. Between them, as a team of two, they will cycle 140 kms (three stages of 55km, 15 km and 70 km), run 36 km (including a 33 km mountain stage that crosses the Southern Alps) and kayak 67kms of the grade two Waimakariri River through the Grand Canyon of New Zealand, the Waimakariri Gorge.
Other than the obviously gruelling nature of this undertaking, two things stand out for me about James and Helena doing this race.
Firstly, this is (part of) their honeymoon. Where most people might head for a magical beach on their honeymoon, James and Helena have sort of chosen to do the same, but in their own particular style are doing so by cycling 140km, running across the Southern Alps and kayaking 67km of a pretty serious river. Perhaps someone could reserve them a place with a pair of towels on the beach when they get there?
The second is that they are using the event to raise funds for Myeloma UK, because, well erm, of me and my diagnosis. Wow, gosh, thank you so much guys. There’s a whole bunch of emotions swirling round in my head – I’ve soon learnt that that’s something of a feature of a cancer diagnosis – in response to the news that you’re doing this. Gratitude, mild embarrassment, love, awkwardness… News like this is unfamilar territory for me, but it’s great to know that I’ve got such good friends supporting me and willing to go to such lengths to demonstrate it. Very much looking forward to hearing all about it when you’re back.
So, dear readers, if you would like to sponsor James and Helena in support of Myeloma UK, please do so here. I, and they, would be very grateful.
And if you’d like to follow how they are doing this weekend, I think you can do so here – they are entrants #720.
Pedal, run, paddle! And then, please, relax a little for the rest of your honeymoon…