On 17 and 18 October, friends and families picked a partner from within their household or bubble to take on this exciting Three-Legged challenge.
More than 450 Parkinson’s UK supporters from 15 different countries joined in with the challenge. Participants donned a leg tie and raced at least 200 metres in an attempt to break a world record. Even pets took part!
Gary Shaughnessy, chair of the Board of Trustees at Parkinson’s UK, came up with the Three-Legged Challenge. Gary was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2015.
Gary and his friend Andy had planned a trio of fundraising challenges over 24 hours in May. Because of coronavirus (COVID-19), these could not go ahead as originally planned.
The pair didn't let that stop them. They decided to champion the Three-Legged Challenge, while taking on their own unique race.
The duo completed 300 laps of their local village green over 24 hours. They ran a grand total of 123.18km. To comply with distancing guidelines, they were tied to ‘Basil’, a mannequin dressed in Parkinson’s UK kit.
Talking about the fantastic day, Gary said:
“The whole atmosphere was superb. Through the night people had sent us photos of themselves doing their own Three-Legged Challenge, kids and grandparents - it was a great thing to be involved in.
"The final lap of 300 was an incredible one. We were joined by 3 people with Parkinson’s - Lesley, Vicki and Darren. They’re 3 of the bravest and most resilient people I’ve met. Running with them after 24 hours and completing the route was a privilege.”
An incredible £16,000 raised
Gary and Andy’s fundraising has passed £16,000. And their efforts will be topped up by further donations from others who took part in the event.
Steve Ford, Chief Executive of Parkinson’s UK, thanked Gary's amazing efforts:
“Gary’s determination to improve the lives of everyone affected by Parkinson’s is inspiring. Whether it’s through incredible fundraising challenges or his efforts as chair of our Board of Trustees, Gary continues to be a passionate advocate for the Parkinson’s community.
“We are incredibly grateful to Gary and everyone who took part in this event. There are over 1 million people in the UK affected by the condition, either by living with Parkinson’s themselves, or as a family member, friend or carer of someone who is. Sadly it remains a much misunderstood condition.
Getting Parkinson’s better understood is vital if we are to accelerate breakthroughs in research, as well as support those affected by the condition.”