Taking the heat in their stride

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The men, women and children who took up the marathon challenge battled against temperatures which reached 26?C along the 48-mile course.

Organiser Paul Owen today declared the event a huge success, adding that he expected sponsorship money to exceed the hoped-for figure of £100,000.’I would like to thank all those who helped out on the day,’ he said.

‘From Itex staff to Rotary members and the ladies from Age Concern, as well as all the walkers.

They all deserve a big thank you.’One thousand and five people had started the walk.

Mr Owen said that, as always, a number of people took good advice and threw in the towel when their bodies told them to give up.

A handful of walkers were treated for exhaustion and one person was helped off the course after twisting an ankle.The first walker to finish was Gregory ‘Todski’ Kewish, who ran the course, finishing after 8 hours and 45 minutes, at 11.45 am.

The last walkers made it to Elizabeth Terminal at around 11.30 pm.Mr Kewish, who comes from Santa Cruz in California, has competed in similar endurance events in the States, but said the Itex was a real challenge.’I have run the 50-mile Bridge to Bridge race in San Francisco, but I found this very hard.

St Ouen was particularly obnoxious with the head wind and my training partner Keith Webber helped pace me along the south coast.’It was the first time Mr Kewish, who moved to Jersey four weeks ago to work at Godel Architects, had seen much of the Island.

‘The view was beautiful all the way around,’ he said.

‘I saw the sun rise exactly when I pulled into the Rozel checkpoint.

It was beautiful.’An equally great achievement was that of six-year-old Nanneke Shilliday, who made it all the way to the half way mark at Devil’s Hole.’She did really well,’ her mother Jen said.

‘I was really chuffed to bits with her, she was absolutely fine today and has gone to school as normal.’Ute Illing, who was walking with the surgeon who saved her life after she developed a brain tumour, said the event had been a huge success.

She explained that the walk had cemented her relationship with German professor Jurgen Menzel and his wife.’We decided it was sensible to pull out at La Pulente, but the professor fell in love with the Island and I think it will become an annual event for him,’ she added.Pictures of the event will be published in tomorrow’s JEP.

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