Rugby League and Leeds Rhinos legend Kevin Sinfield OBE is once again embarking on a massive fundraising challenge to support those impacted by motor neurone disease (MND).
Having run seven marathons in seven days back in December 2020, Sinfield will be putting running shoes back on and aiming to complete 101 miles in 24 hours.
With Sinfield now on the coaching staff at Rugby Union side Leicester Tigers, the challenge will start at their home ground at Mattioli Woods, Welford Road and finish at Emerald Headingley Stadium.
Starting on Monday 22nd November, the run will be split into 7km segments, each must be completed within a hour before the next one starts on the hour. Originally, the journey was planned to cover a distance of 100 miles but the actual final route covers 101 miles with Sinfield once again proving he will always go the ‘extra mile’ for his friend and former team mate Rob Burrow.
Sinfield’s initial target for ‘The Extra Mile Challenge’ is to raise £100,000 as he runs just short of four marathons back to back in a day. This challenge, inspired by Burrow, will be raising money directly to benefit people living with MND. Donations will be split equally between the Leeds Hospitals Charity appeal to build the Rob Burrow Centre for MND supporting people living with MND and their families, and the MND Association which funds multi-disciplinary care delivered at the Centre and others across the country, as well as research into potential treatments for the disease.
“Undoubtedly this will the toughest challenge I have ever attempted but I know it will mean so much to so many people if we can reach our fundraising target,” said Sinfield, who raised over £2.7million with last December’s efforts.
“In my short time at the Tigers, the people in Leicester have made me feel so welcome and it is wonderful that we have been able to come up with an event that starts in Leicester and finishes with us coming home to Emerald Headingley.
“The response from the public last year was breath taking and I know, from feedback we have received from the MND Association, every penny that was raised has been put to good use to help members of the MND community across England and Wales. The more money we can raise, the more people we can help and ultimately find a cure for this cruel disease. We have seen science and research do some incredible things over the last year and I know so much work is going on to find a breakthrough for MND.
“I am sure there will be tough times as we pound the streets during the day and night, in cold November temperatures, but knowing the good we can all achieve together will be a huge motivation for everyone involved.”
The route for the run has been devised by the Carnegie School of Sport at Leeds Beckett University and, unlike last year when Covid restrictions impacted supporter numbers, the route will be publicised in advance so well wishers can come out to cheer the team on.
In addition to public donations, Sinfield is hoping to attract five key-benefactors who will donate £20,000 each and their logos will feature on his running vest as he completes the challenge as well as being recognised throughout the event. It is hoped that this will double the initial target to £200,000.
Supporters can back Kevin’s appeal now at https://donate.giveasyoulive.com/fundraising/kevin-sinfields-the-extra-mile-challenge, while anyone interested in becoming one of the key-benefactors can contact email@example.com