A MORAY triathlete is ready to take a huge bite out of the big apple when he takes on the might of the New York City marathon next month.
Martin Archibald will fly across the Atlantic with his younger sister Gillian Fraser at the end of the month with the dynamic duo out to raise money for charity.
More than 30,000 athletes and two million spectators are expected to gather at Verrazano-Narrows Bridge in the Upper Bay area of the city on November 2 to take part in one of the world’s biggest marathon challenges. Martin, of Garmouth, and Gillian, who now lives in Aberdeen, have been in training since the beginning of the year and are now nearing the final stages of their gruelling preparation.
They have both been running around 20 miles a week and will gradually ease off the training for the final few weeks so they don’t tire themselves out before the race.
They are set to fly to New York on October 31 – just two days before the marathon – leaving them around 24 hours to recover from the six-hour flight and prepare for the big day. Martin, who took part in the 1999 Edinburgh marathon, admitted the travelling was the part of the event he was dreading.
“I’m looking forward to going to America and to having a beer afterwards but I’m looking forward to the actual marathon with trepidation,” he said.
“I think I must have had one too many when we decided to do it! I’m a bit worried about the jet lag. Running a marathon is all psychological though and if you can get past the first 18-20 miles then you should be okay. I’m confident of finishing the race.”
Martin (36), will run in a kilt and is looking to raise around £1,500 for Children 1st through sponsorship. He has already managed to raise around half that sum and is looking for more support to reach his total.
He said: “I wanted to do the marathon for a Scottish charity and I’ve got two kids of my own. When you hear about abused kids and you have children of your own it really makes you think.
“I’ve had a lot of support already and I want to thank those who have helped me.”
Gillian (23), who is running for Marie Curie Cancer Care, admitted the gruelling training schedule had proved a struggle at first, although she was now almost fully prepared for the challenge.
She said: “I’ve never run a marathon before and wasn’t even a runner until this year. Training has been hard work, especially now that winter is drawing in and it will be difficult to find the time to go out as we both work full time.
“God only knows why I chose to do it. I wanted a challenge as there is no point in doing something that was going to be easy.
“If I’m going to do one marathon in my life then I might as well make it a good one. I’m looking forward to seeing New York as I’ve never been there before, but I’m not really looking forward to the marathon itself.”Martin and Gillian are holding a bottle stall at Asda in Elgin tomorrow (Saturday) to raise money for their chosen charities. They thaned the distilleries that donated bottles of whisky for the stall and the other companies who have supported them. If you would like to help them you can sponsor Martin online at www.justgiving.com/martinarchibald or to sponsor Gillian you can phone 835336 or visit www.justgiving.com/donatetogillian
© Scottish Provincial Press 2001
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