Determined man from Sandy runs 100km in just one week for Smile Train

A determined man from Sandy completed a 100km run in only one week as he aimed to raise funds for the Smile Train during the pandemic.
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Edward Newbon, 46, took part in the ‘Virtual Race to the Stones’ from July 6–12, raising £300 for the charity, which helps children in developing countries who are born with a cleft palate.

Every morning before work Edward would complete around 17km, travelling around Sandy, to the RSPB lodge, along the bridleway to Biggleswade and to its market square, before heading back again. And he only took a break on the Thursday!

Edward said: “I’d always wanted to try an ultra marathon, because a couple of my friends had run one, and I thought, ‘If I’m doing this, I would like to help a charity’.

Edward during his challenge; Right - with his son, Ren, at a 'Hitchin Half' eventEdward during his challenge; Right - with his son, Ren, at a 'Hitchin Half' event
Edward during his challenge; Right - with his son, Ren, at a 'Hitchin Half' event

“The Wednesday was definitely the hardest, because I was shattered from the Monday and Tuesday. Friday, wasn’t too bad, Saturday I struggled, but Sunday was the quickest time of them all.”

Edward has so far raised £300 - double his original target - which will provide surgery for two youngsters.

Edward added: “I used to teach children in Africa and Japan, who were the same age of the children who Smile Train helps. I really felt for them and wanted to help out, so more children could have life-changing surgery.

“In developing countries there might not be a hospital or it’s a low priority surgery, so children with a cleft palate often have problems with breast feeding, speaking, gum disease and infections, while there’s the worry that they will also get bullied at school.”

After his successful charity challenge, Edward hopes to complete the ‘Race to the Stones’ next year. When not blighted by the pandemic,it normally involves running 100km along a historical trail past Wayland’s Smithy to the Stone Circle at Avebury.

Edward started running when he was aged 22 in his home town of Bognor Regis and has completed 12 full marathons on four different continents, in cities including Sydney, New York and Paris.

He added: “Once you’ve run your first marathon, you want your second one to be faster!”

Edward has lived in Sandy for five years and has a wife - Ayumi, 40, and son Ren, two.