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Running for Gurkha funds
MORE than 400 runners from all over the south of England assembled at Tidworth to take part in the first Gurkha Run to raise money for the Salisbury-based Gurkha Welfare Trust.
The races attracted military and civilian runners, and there was a good selection of teams from Gurkha units in the UK.
There were two races - a half marathon and a 10km run - both across the army’s crosscountry driving course, with some serious obstacles and steep hills. In addition, both races feature the infamous doko race.
As part of the British Army’s recruitment process, the Gurkhas run in an uphill race carrying 75lb of stones on their back. In this race the competitors had to carry sandbags weighing either 40lbs or 20lbs up and down a hill.
The 10k race was won in fine style by Private Yadap Rai, 23, from 28 Sqn, 10 Transport Regiment RLC based at Aldershot. “It was quite tough,” he said, “but it is good to help the old soldiers back in Nepal.”
Much to the chagrin of the Gurkhas, the half marathon was won by Lee Greatorix from Sutton Running Club. “It was tough but exhilarating, the mud just sapped all the energy from your legs,” he said.
“But I’ll do it again next year.”
Two Gurkha soldiers from 2nd Battalion, The Royal Gurkha Regiment, recently returned from Brunei and posted to Folkestone, upheld the honour of the Gurkhas by coming in second and third.
Also running was retired Colonel David Hayes, 62, a former Colonel of the Brigade of Gurkhas and a trustee of the trust.
He said: “This has been a very successful first run. We will repeat it next year and we hope to hold two or three more similar runs further north, perhaps in Catterick and Manchester.”
“One of the aims of the run was to get more younger people aware of the trust and the work that we do, and that has been very evident today as the runners met and talked to the Gurkha soldiers.”
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