Walker compete with sailors in London to Brighton race

Walker compete with sailors in London to Brighton race

The sailing team

The walking team

Walker compete with sailors in London to Brighton race

First published in News by

A charity race between booters and boaters came to a close on Sunday.

Two sailing teams competed with two walking teams to see which could get from Tower Bridge in London to Brighton Marina first.

Sail 4 Cancer, a specialist cancer respite charity with a sporting focus, launched Boot Vs Boat 2014 at noon on Saturday.

The boaters had a 140-mile voyage to negotiate with the booters making a 60-mile pilgrimage to the marina.

Last year’s inaugural challenge saw the sailing teams come in ahead of the walkers in 19 hours – five hours faster than expected.

The walkers weren’t shamed, however, completing the course 23 hours after they left the capital – one hour quicker than planned.

This year was different as the booters had Army recruits leading the pack.

They won the race with the first trekking to the marina in 17 and a half hours, getting in at 5.30am.

The boaters came in at 7.55am, almost two and a half hours after the walkers.

Michael Beard, editor of The Argus, was on one of the vessels.

He said: “It was exhilarating – it was just incredible.

“We were really flying at times, especially down the Thames.

“But when we got round to Dover the wind was against us a bit.

“Sailing at night is something different.”

He said the walkers put in an impressive performance this year.

“I am full of admiration for those who walked it. You should have seen the blisters some had on their feet,” he added.

Two of the walkers were Sussex-based David Dickinson, a self-employed consultant, and Sean Donovan from Development Garden.

Graham Precey was also among the walkers trekking back to Brighton.

The head of corporate responsibility and ethics at Legal and General, and the chair of trustees for the 4 Cancer charity, said: “From the north of Sussex to the coast at Brighton is a very long way when you are walking it.

“Distances you take for granted in a car feel very different on foot.

“The sailing and walking teams have raised the funds for respite for another 25 families going through the toughness of cancer, which puts the pain of our blisters and aching muscles into perspective.”

The event has so far raised more than £11,000.

To donate, visit www.sail4cancer. org/boot-v-boat-2014.

Sailors can register for next year’s event at info@sail4cancer.org with walkers emailing info@run4cancer.org.

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