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LAST NOT LEAST: Amersham’s backwards marathon runner last to cross the finish line

 Published on: 10th May 2023   |   By: Darius Morgan   |   Category: Uncategorized

An Amersham man who finished the London Marathon in last place after he walked the whole route backwards has raised more than double his fundraising target.

Fundraising fanatic Tom Harrison smashed his £2,000 target and raised £4,000 to aid the British Red Cross’ support of Ukraine by walking all 26.2 miles of the marathon on April 23 backwards. He previously completed the marathon in 2017, when he crawled the route dressed as a gorilla.

Undaunted by his newest challenge, Tom set off in the morning in high spirits. The walk took him more than 12 hours to complete and he finished shortly before midnight.

He said: “It was a long day! It was challenging, but interesting in its own way. I’d done some practice, but nowhere near 26 miles. It’s slow; you have to constantly look around and you can’t speed up. It was kind of depressing when I worked out I was only going two miles per hour!”

Tom set off at the back of the first pack of runners and had a good view of the next blocks of oncoming latecomers as they approached and raced past him.

He said: “I had a weird sensation; it felt like I was moving forward as they were all passing me!”

Marathon volunteers were busy dismantling the course as Tom reached the final miles, and a wrong turn meant that he had to double back.

Tom laughed: “I’ve got to be one of the few runners who did an extra mile!”

Tom is no stranger to coming up with unique ideas to raise money for charity. Last year, he walked 263 miles from Land’s End in Cornwall to Parliamentary Square in London. Aiming to replicate the experience of Ukrainian refugees, Tom set off with no money whatsoever. He raised nearly £5,000 for the British Red Cross Ukraine Crisis Appeal.

You can support his fundraising efforts at his JustGiving page.

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