Bungay Marathon gets under way on Sunday

AMONGST the 250 runners expected at the Bungay Black Dog Marathon this Sunday will be one rather special competitor- a 45 year old who hopes to complete “a marathon of marathons” before he is 50.

AMONG the 250 runners expected

at the Bungay Black Dog Marathon this Sunday will be one rather

special competitor, a 45-year-old

who hopes to complete "a

marathon of marathons" before he is 50.

Simon Illingworth, a father of three, has included the Bungay Marathon in his bid to run in 100 marathons for Cancer Research in the next five years.

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The challenge will mean running 26 marathons this year, and Mr Illingworth plans to follow the Bungay Marathon with the Exmoor Coastal Marathon in Weymouth just six days later.

Mr Illingworth was diagnosed with testicular cancer and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, a cancer of the immune system, four years ago, but has

since run 50 marathons and raised £7,000.

Mr Illingworth, from Coventry, who takes inspiration from other fundraising athletes with cancer such as the late Jane Tomlinson and cyclist Lance Armstrong, said: "I want something good to come out of something bad and am doing all I can to raise awareness of testicular cancer."

The 26th Bungay Black Dog Marathon will start at 10.30am at the Maltings Meadow at Ditchingham and the half at 12.30pm.

Bungay mayor John Groom will open proceedings, and the runners will complete one or two laps of

the Waveney Valley loop course through Bungay, Mettingham

and Shipmeadow to Beccles and

back via Gillingham, Geldeston

and Ellingham before finishing next to the grandstand on Maltings Meadow.

The oldest marathon entrants this year are believed to be Robin Wilson, from Collingwood AC, who has completed the Bungay marathon many times, and in the half Anthony Cook from Huntingdon, both of

whom are the only competitors in

the V70 category. Another entrant is last year's winner marathon winner Carl Prewer from Lowestoft, who has this year entered the half.

During the day refreshments will be available on the field and in the licensed clubhouse, and there will be changing showers and massage facilities for the runners. Deputy town reeve Maureen Davies will present the prizes.

The entrance to Pirnhow Street at Ditchingham Dam will be closed for traffic as it forms part of the course so it will not be possible to drive via Bridge Street or Chicken Roundabout.

Visit www.bungay-marathon.

co.uk/ directions.htm for details or for full details visit www.bungay-marathon.co.uk.

To sponsor Simon Illingworth visit www.justgiving.com/simonilling