Undoubtedly Europe’s greatest ever 100m sprinter, Linford became the Olympic 100m Champion after winning the Gold Medal in Barcelona, 1992. In an International career spanning seventeen years, Linford competed over 60 times for his country and won more major championship medals, 23, than any other British sprinter.
Linford is the only British athlete to have won Gold medals in the 100 metres at all four major competitions and was the first European to have run sub ten seconds. His fastest time of 9.87 seconds was recorded when he won the 1993 World Championship in Stuttgart.
Amongst the numerous awards bestowed upon Linford, were the prestigious 1993 ‘BBC Sports Personality of the Year’ and ‘European Athlete of the Year’.
Linford has appeared on numerous television shows, having presented three series of ‘Linford’s Record Breakers’ on BBC1 and ‘Garden Invaders’ amongst others. He has worked as a technical commentator in Athletics and has presented many sport-specific programmes over the years. Linford was CNN’s lead commentator throughout the London 2012 Olympic Games when he analysed action on the Athletics track and provided his expert views and opinions.
Linford’s success in Athletics has continued since his retirement in a coaching role, having coached a number of top athletes to success including Olympic medallists Darren Campbell, Katharine Merry, Mark Lewis Francis and Commonwealth Gold Medallist Laura Turner. He has also trained alongside and coached Frankie Fredericks. Linford is currently coaching some of Britain’s leading international athletes, European Indoor Silver Medallist & European U23 400m Champion Nigel Levine and Olympians James Ellington and Margaret Adeoye. Linford is one of Britain’s most successful Coaches and had 5 Athletes competing in the London Olympics in 2012 and 3 athletes in Rio 2016 Olympics.
Linford launched Street Athletics in June 2004 in conjunction with Manchester City Council, in an attempt to find the raw sprinting talent that is being lost to other sports and computer games. The scheme was extended to cover 4 cities in 2006. Since 2005 the project has grown and become more successful, visiting its greatest amount of venues, 22, in 2009 and still going strong in 2017.
Steve is one of the UK’s most well known sporting individuals. As an athlete his career was forged alongside Coe and Ovett to form a period of unprecedented success in British athletics and since retiring has become one of the BBC’s most respected Presenters / Commentators. In a career spanning over three decades, since appearing as a 17 year old at the Commonwealth Games in 1978, Steve’s many achievements include six Gold medals at the Commonwealth Games and the European and World Championships. Following an incredible season in 1983 Steve was voted BBC Sports Personality of the Year, one of the few athletes to have won the award, and in 1986 he was awarded an MBE. At the 1984 Olympic Games held in Los Angeles, Steve returned from injury to take a Silver medal in the 1500m behind Sebastian Coe. The following year he broke World records in the 1500m, 2000m and Mile, all within 19 days; the latter lasting almost 9 years. Since retiring from competitive athletics Steve has become a very successful television commentator, first with Eurosport, and then with Channel 4 before joining the BBC as the Chief Athletics Commentator. Steve has co-presented both the Summer and Winter Olympics since Sydney 2000. Most recently he provided the soundtrack for a phenomenal London Olympic Games for Team GB’s athletes, in particular Mo Farah’s stunning 5K and 10K double gold performances. Steve has also been a regular contributor to BBC Radio 5 Live including hosting popular 606 and Sunday Sport. Away from the track and the commentating, Steve recently stepped down as Chairman of the English Institute of Sport, which is a nationwide network of sport science and sports medical support services, designed to foster the talents of our elite athletes of all sports. Closer to home Steve was honoured to accept the role of Chancellor of Sunderland University in 2008. An establishment where he received his own BA Hons degree back in 1983 and a region which is extremely close to his heart up here in the North East. He also fulfils the role of Chairman in his own children’s charity, COCO which he co-founded back in 1999. To date the charity has raised over £4 million for disadvantaged children across the globe. Assisting in providing an education that otherwise would have been impossible. COCO continues to work in a number of countries in Africa and employs 4 members of staff here in the UK. Steve is an excellent corporate/motivational speaker and conference host. He has worked with blue chip clients such as Aviva, HSBC , Allianz, Hewlett Packard and Samsung. He currently represents Atos, Clydesdale/Yorkshire bank, SSE and Nike as ambassador for their brand and business. As a motivational speaker, his presentations draw on experiences and memorable accounts of the magnificent golden era of British Athletics and are extremely well delivered in an inspiring and motivational way. Steve examines the principles of success in the high performance environment and draws parallels with the business community from both a corporate and individual perspective. Now in his capacity as a successful sports broadcaster and presenter Steve’s story and presentation is one of drive, determination, achievement and humour that everyone who hears it can relate to. Steve is also co Director of DS Media and Events which organise the successful Kielder Marathon, Sunderland City 10K and Half Marathon, Worcester City Run and the Durham City Run. Predominantly running events that welcome over 15,000 people annually to enjoy rising to the challenges set.stevecramtraining.com
Sally, a working mother of three boys, uses her phenomenal athletics career to inspire and empower others, from families to corporates, to achieve their goals. The synergy between sport and business has allowed Sally to get people to believe in their own ability and become the very best that they can be.
Sally achieves this via motivational keynote speaking and provides insights, tips and tools that listeners can take away and apply in order to make a real change to their life.
Sally also delivers wellbeing programmes to businesses that are adapted to run alongside the company’s key messaging, such as leadership, coaching, sustaining excellence, goal setting, or mind and motivation. Sally educates businesses, both large and small how to communicate that corporate message and inspires and equips them with the ideas, evidence and materials to help them develop and communicate a health and wellbeing programme.
Sally also supports a number of charities and good-causes and uses the tools learnt from her athletics career in her everyday life, to set goals and plan how to achieve them.sallygunnell.com
Ultramarathoner Dean Karnazes was named by TIME magazine as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World. He has raced an competed on all seven continents, and once ran 50 marathons, in all 50 of the US states, in 50 consecutive days. A frequent speaker and New York Times bestselling author, Dean lives with his wife and family in Northern California.ultramarathonman.com/web
Susie Chan is an Endurance Runner, who takes on races of all distances from 1 mile to 100 miles. She is a veteran of several Marathon des Sables, runs 100 mile non-stop races and through jungles. She has also finished all of the World Marathon Majors. As well as running, Susie can be found talking about running in interviews, radio and magazines, as well as commentating at races. Named and “the number 1 runner to follow on Instagram” by Runners World, follow her running adventures on Social Media.susie-chan.com
Iwan Thomas is an Olympic silver medallist and former European and Commonwealth 400m Champion, and the fastest ever British 400m runner after setting the British Record twenty years ago. Since retiring from athletics he is a regular presenter on The One Show and an accomplished live events presenter, including hosting the 2017 World Athletics Championships.
Kriss is famous for his achievements in athletics where his greatest individual triumph was his gold medal in the 1990 European Championships, beating David Hemery’s 22-year-old British record for 400m hurdles, which Kriss currently still holds 28 years on. He began his international athletics career in 1983 as a member of the 4×400 metre relay squad and will probably always be remembered for helping Britain clinch the gold and beating the Americans in the World Championships 4×400 metre relay in Tokyo in 1991.
In 1992 as 3 times Olympic medalist, and a World, European and Commonwealth Champion, Kriss was awarded the MBE by Her Majesty the Queen in her birthday honours list, in recognition of his services to the country through athletics. His move into television and entertainment began when he presented The Big Breakfast. This was followed with a full time position as co-presenter with BBC’s Record Breakers and various other children’s programmes. Kriss is consulted today on a variety of radio and TV programmes to discuss topics ranging from sport to business and is a regular contributor to Sky News Paper Reviews.
Kriss embarked upon an MBA (Masters in Business Administration) programme at Ashridge Business School, to augment his twenty plus years experience gained through professional speaking, training, and facilitating presentations and workshops in the corporate arena where his marvellous personality and reputation as an engaging, inspiring and informative public speaker have made him a very popular and attractive advocate. Kriss is currently pursuing a Masters in existential psychotherapy and is also an accredited personal coach, having qualified at the Hudson Institute of Santa Barbara.akabusi.com
Susannah is the female World Record Holder for running 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days and author of “Running around the World: How I ran 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days.”
She completed the feat when taking part in World Marathon Challenge in February 2019 which saw her run 295km and travel 55,000 miles in 168 hours. She finished 6 of the 7 marathons in first place, with an average race time of 3 hours 28 minutes and 9 seconds which smashed the previous record of 3 hours 55 minutes. She ran in aid of SportsAid and raised over £19,000 for the charity which supports Great Britain’s next generation of athletes.
Her best marathon time is 2 hours 56 minutes which was achieved at the Manchester Marathon in April 2019 where she was the 19th woman to cross the line. At the 2012 London Marathon she set a a Guinness World Record for the fastest woman dressed as an animal, completing the race in a time of 3 hours 18 minutes dressed as a peacock, only to beaten by a tortoise a few years later.
Aside from the 60+ marathons she has completed over the last decade, Susannah has run a number of ultra-marathons, including 100km (her new best time achieved last month), 100 mile and 24-hour races. Her favourite races to date have been the 100km Pharaonic Race around Cairo in 2012 where she was first woman and third overall, along with a 100km Thames Path Challenge from Henley to Putney along the river Thames which she won in 10 hours 17 minutes in 2017.
She is a qualified personal trainer alongside her full-time job as a Director of Communications and Corporate Affairs for The Alizeti Group, having worked in horseracing, betting and politics since graduating from Exeter University with a degree in History in 2006.
Susannah’s book – “Running Around the World: How I ran 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days” – sets out how she trained for and achieved a world record. Through her website – www.wecanbeamazing.com – she wants to inspire others to realise we can all be amazing.
Susannah runs on the streets of London and up and down the hills of Shropshire, England.wecanbeamazing.com
Jo has been ranked European number one on numerous occasions at various distances between 2004 & 2014 and has also ranked in the world’s top 3 in 2004 & 2007. Jo is the oldest European Champion in history & the only British runner to have competed in five Olympic Games.
European Record 2 miles indoors 2004, Commonwealth Record 3000m indoors 2004 & 2007. Jo also holds a number of masters world records including 5000m, 10000m and ten miles.
Jo’s book, This Mum Runs, was published in July 2016. The paperback edition was released in March 2017. Jo’s book was shortlisted for the Cross Sports National Book Awards – autobiography of the year.
2017 Comrades Champion. 50K/100K World Champion. 50 mi-12hr-100 mi-24hr World Records
50 Miles— 5:38:41 (World Record)
12 Hr- 92.9 Miles (World Record)
100 Miles- 12:42:40 (World Record, Trail
24Hr- 162.919 Miles (World Record)
Voted Ultrarunning Magazine Female Ultrarunner of the Year in 2017
Voted USATF Ultrarunner of the Year 2015 – 2018
Lazurus Lake (aka Gary Cantrell) is the man behind the revered and feared Barkley Marathons. Known to many as one of the toughest races on earth, the route involves 5 x 20 miles laps and 66,000 ft of unmarked ascent in and around Frozen Head Park in Tennessee. It has been completed only 18 times by 15 runners since 1989. Laz is as much of an enigma as his races, which also include the Last Annual Vol State and last-man-standing sufferfest Big’s Backyard Ultra. A serious ultra runner himself Laz recently finished a 3,365-mile walk across the US and joins us exclusively to chat about what it takes to finish one of his races.
Nicky Spinks is a long distance runner, specialising in fell and trail ultra running. Nicky has set women’s records for the major fell running challenges the Ramsay Round, the Paddy Buckley Round and the Bob Graham Round. She is the holder of the overall record for the double Bob Graham Round and in 2019 become the first person to run a historic 122-mile Double Paddy Buckley Round in the brutally-tough mountains of Wales. Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005, Nicky has used her illness as a driving force for her achievements and has gone on to become one of the most celebrated ultra runners in the sports history.
Mimi Anderson is an endurance athlete who found her love of running at the age of 36 very quickly discovering her ability to run silly distances.
Mimi has taken part in extreme races around the world running across Deserts, mountains, enduring the freezing temperatures of the Arctic the heat and humidity of the Peruvian jungle and the extreme heat of Death Valley in America setting course records, World Records and on a few occasions beating the men! She is well known for her “doubles” taking on some of the worlds toughest endurance races and not just doing them once but running back to the start once she has finished.
Pushing herself to the limits has strengthened Mimi’s resilience and taught her its importance in boosting her mental and physical health.
Anna is an adventurer, speaker, author and mischief maker. Named by the Guardian as one of the top female adventurers of our time, Condé Nast Traveller included her in a list of the 50 most influential travellers in the world. She is the UK ambassador for Girl Guiding, and has cycled over 20,000 miles in Europe and the Americas, including through all 50 states of the USA. She has also run the length of New Zealand, and has a penchant for rollerblading.
In the summer of 2019 she set off on her most ambitious adventure yet – an attempt to run 2,620 miles (100 marathons) through Britain… in her bare feet.
Scott Jenkins, like his younger brother Rhys is a Welsh Ultra endurance runner who has ran across Death Valley twice and will compete in this years Moab 240 mile run in Utah through the Moab desert as well as crewing for Rhys at this years Badwater race. Scott first got the “ultra running bug” after completing 75 marathons in 75 days alongside his brother running from Boston to Austin (2000miles) and also ran the circumference of Wales in a non-stop relay. In addition, Scott has ran multiple ultra endurance races of 32 miles, 50 miles, 100 miles, 130 miles and 145miles and recently set the FKT for running from Windsor Castle to Buckingham Palace. An avid runner, Scott like his brother likes to create his own challenges to raise money for charities and as such has also ran across Iceland, as well as cycling in a non-stop 4 man relay from Seattle to Jacksonville (4000 miles) to name but a few. Scott’s passion for challenging the limits of his body, raising money for charity and overcoming rhabdomyolysis has seen Scott speak at Johnson & Johnson, Save the Children and attend an Operation Smile mission in Miekele, Ethiopia as well as being invited to speak on several podcasts. Scott talks often about his lessons learnt from his challenges and their applicability to personal and professional life as well as how he trains his mind and body to be able to overcome perceived insurmountable challenges.
Scott’s running exploits have seen him become 1 of 3 UK ambassadors for the charity, Operation Smile.
Rhys Jenkins is a Welsh ultra endurance runner who is one of the few to have ran a double crossing of Death Valley (in 107hours) and has been invited to run Badwater (the worlds toughest foot race) this year. Rhys ran 75 marathons in 75 days with his Brother Scott (2000miles from Boston to Austin), which he recently repeated running 24 marathons in 24 days and since then has ran 130 and 145mile races in addition to running from Edinburgh to Cardiff and across Iceland to name but a few. He has also completed two non-stop 7 man running relays around the circumference of Wales, along with a non-stop 3 man relay cycling historic Route 66. His passion for running has seen him set up his own running company known as Pegasus Ultra Running and as an avid runner is keen to share his insights and how he overcomes both physical and mental barriers. Rhys has spoken to Senior Leaders of the Obama Administration at the Whitehouse and is a CF Warriors Ambassador.pegasusultrarunning.com
Jess Robson is the driving force behind Run Talk Run, a global mental health support community that uses running as a means to facilitate peer support. Having experienced a difficult relationship with formal therapy, Jess found solace in opening up with ease whilst running and chose to open up that space to other people who are struggling with mental ill health. Jess is an advocate for making running less intimidating – without care for pace, without care for PBs – she believes running can simply be a means to connect with our peers.runtalkrun.com
Nikki Love has notched up some pretty impressive running feats as she chases adventure in the form of one epic challenge after another. Her previous challenges include: 7 marathons in 7 days, the JungleUltra in Peru, the DesertUltra in Namibia, 63 marathons in 63 days throughout the UK, Run Around Ireland (750 miles in 32 days), and Run Across Netherlands (150 miles in 5 days).
Nikki describes these adventures as training runs for her next extraordinary adventure. What’s up next? Well she’s got her heart, head and plans set on Running Across Australia in 2020 which involves running 2,400 miles from Perth to Sydney in 63 days.
Nikki talks about the planning and training required (both mentally and physically) to take your running dream goals and make them real.nikkilove.co.uk
Now a wheelchair user I suffered a spinal and brain injury which cut short a very promising rugby career. My life went on hold for a very long time
After my horrific accident, I lost what meant most to me and it took all my motivation and drive I ever had.
Since then I have got myself out and got myself pushing. I am now back in the gym and back living my life.
My chair has now become my legs and my chair gets me running and gets me in the Outdoors.
Despite holding me back it has opened up many doors as well.
Being in a chair has its boundaries and it is very difficult.
Since my accident I have completed a climb up Mt Snowdon which was completed in the fastest time with a team assisting me up the mountain. This year I have also completed the London Marathon 2019. The marathon opened up many doors for me, like giving me the opportunity to aiding the organising of the first inclusive trail race with OMM and Magic Outdoors at Cannock Chase in Stafford. As well as aiding in the course organisation I also completed and came in as the first wheelchair user to complete the course
It’s not all a race though; I use my pushing on roads and trails to encourage inclusivity and promote how no matter what injury your still able to do so much and it is important to get out to keep
Running/Pushing is my relief and becoming a huge part of my life. As a young professional who is working whilst attending university I now find my pushing my relief, it’s what keeps a smile on my face. It allows me to get out with my family and it suits everyone’s needs.
Organising and participating in events have now given me a dream and a mission. I believe as a wheelchair user and as an adventurer I need to push the boundaries and challenge norm. Not for myself but for everyone. I need to prove that it can be done, if it takes that one push I’m motivated to push and let people know that you are the only person holding yourself back. People can tell you that you cannot do something but unless you look to adapt you won’t achieve. People can achieve great things and getting out in to the country needs to be used more whilst creating positive memories
Alex is a Sports dietitian and endurance nutrition expert. She is also a UKA athletics coach coaching ultra distance athletes as part of the Running with Us team. Being also a competitive runner for 20 years, she is able to translate the science into reality for all runners. With degrees in Sports & Exercise Science and Nutrition & Dietetics, she has over 13 years experience in a variety of settings, including the NHS, British Army and the Institute of Naval Medicine Research Team and elite sport. Now based in Berkshire, Alex runs her own performance nutrition consultancy (@theSportsDietitian @Diet360). Her clients vary from amateur to elite athletes. She supports both junior and senior athletes to achieve their goals from county through to international level.
As a competitive distance runner, she has made a mark in the world of Ultra Running. With a number of domestic podium finishes and a top 30 finish at Laveredo Ultra trail, Alex is able to draw on her 20 years running experience to fuel her client’s endurance goals.
Prior to her mountain goat endeavors, Alex’s personal bests range from 36.10 for 10K, 81 minutes for the half marathon and recently 2:57 for the marathon.diet360_
Jordan Wylie is an extreme adventurer and bestselling author who is also one of the stars of Channel 4’s Hunted and Celebrity Hunted. Has ran through the most dangerous countries in the world, raising hundreds of thousands for charity, climbed Kilimanjaro barefoot and this year will attempt to be the first person on record to row the Bab El Mandeb Straits, the gateway to the Gulf of Aden, the most dangerous stretch of water on the planet.
The former soldier who is also the UK national ambassador for Army Cadets ran 15 marathons in 15 days in the 15 National Parks of the United Kingdom in 2019 to promote getting outside and running for better mental health. Jordan is also an epileptic that has been diagnosed with severe depression and chronic anxiety.
Allie Bailey describes herself as an ‘ordinary person with infinite possibilities’. An ultrarunner and adventurer, she has five world firsts to her name, and has run almost 100 marathons and ultras all over the world since taking up running seven years ago. Allie is passionate about promoting the benefits of running as therapy in the spheres of mental health and confidence building, and is a die hard champion for female participation in the sport. She has recently founded Ultra Awesome – an online community that aims to inspire and support more people to take the step up to ultra distance and adventure running. Allie also co-presents the Bad Boy Running Podcast and, when not out testing routes, can be found being dragged around the Mendips by her four dogs.
Anita Bean is an award-winning registered nutritionist, internationally published author, and former champion athlete. She specialises in sport and exercise nutrition and is passionate about helping runners improve their performance in training and competition. She is the author of The Runner’s Cookbook, Vegetarian Meals in 30 minutes and The Complete Guide to Sports Nutrition, among other titles. Anita is also the nutritionist for the London Marathon.
Charlie started fell running in 2003 and never knew where it would take him. 17 years later he has completed the Bob Graham Round twice, a Ramsay Round and also most recently the Paddy Buckley Round in Wales (all onsight – no prior practice or route knowledge) with his good friend Damian Hall, he has set up a company called Mountain Run, with a highly skilled team of local runners sharing their skills and passion for running in the fells of the Lake District and further afield. They also offer guiding for aspiring runners for the Big Three UK Rounds.
With a love of climbing and always up for a real challenge, Charlie has completed a highly esoteric Lakeland Classic Rock Round, which encompasses 15 rock climbs, of up to VS standard, in the Lakes with 56km and 4500m of ascent, to be completed in 24 hours. Alongside all of this, Charlie is the race director and creator of the epic Lake District Sky Trails ‘Sky Races’ and Keswick Mountain Festival trail races, all based in the Lake District.
Most recently he is has been seen working on the magical Faroe Islands at the Atjan Island Festival, helping delivery a 5 day running festival and 4 mountain trail races. He is now awaiting a ‘proper’ winter in the Lakes to have a go at being the first to complete the Bob Graham Round on skis. Charlie likes nothing more than combining running, climbing and his first love, which is skiing in the Lakes, and can be mainly found on the mountains of the Helvellyn range mixing it all up. His first love in running was the niche sector of Mountain Marathon’s, which to the uninitiated are 2 day navigational/mountain orienteering events where runners are given a map on the start line, with no prior knowledge of the course and spend 2 days running self sufficient around the mountains, camping overnight. This year he was lucky enough to win one of the toughest races in the UK, namely the Marmot Dark Mountains, with Steve Birkinshaw (the previous record holder of the Wainwrights Round and author of There Is No Map in Hell), where the mountain marathon concept is compressed into one long night at the end of January, which he was the original route/course planner for.
Although he loves the Dark Mountain’s event, Charlie is fore-going his place in next years race, as its the same weekend as the National Running Show, and coming to talk about some very inspiring stuff about the wilds of the mountains in the UK.mountainrun.co.uk lakedistrictskytrails.co.uk
Louise is a Dundee based person trainer and endurance athlete. She has spent her career focusing on improving the mental and physical health of women, utilising her expansive knowledge to adapt recommendations to allow each individual to strive for an improvement in their health.
Louise has struggled with depression throughout her life. This in turn has been the driving motivation for the fundraising Louise has undertaken over several years. To give an example of the extent of her running ability, one of the races she ran in 2016 was the Marathon des Sables, raising over £5,000 for Dundee Association for Mental Health, covering 154 miles over 6 days in gruelling conditions. Louise describes herself as a ‘middle to back of the pack’ runner, loving to chat with fellow runners along the way, to hear their stories and what has brought them to take on their current challenge.
Louise is passionate about raising the profile of mental health, holding talks in schools and businesses as well as the general public. 2017 saw the launch of Dundee mental health awareness week – Heart Tay Heart, started by Louise herself, (http://www.heart-tay-heart.co.uk/).
2020 will see Louise take on her biggest challenge to date, it involves 7 countries, 2 feet and over 3,000 miles in approximately 100 days.
Nick is a British Endurance Athlete, writer, and speaker. From a small shy boy in the south of England, with a passion for sport – to a successful career in banking, to then becoming one of the most widely travelled athletes in the world. And all before the age of 30. Around 22 months ago he waved a cheery good-bye to life in Bristol, England in order to embark on a bid to become the first person on the planet to run a marathon in every country in the world. In case that didn’t quite sink in first time… a marathon (yep, 26.2miles) in every country in the world (all 196 of them) in less than 2 years. As of November 2019, Nick would have been crowned as the first person to achieve this. Along with this, he sets a number of world records and has a wild, eclectic story to tell. His talk is accompanied with stunning photography and videography from around the world and he hopes that every person takes something valuable and meaningful from the talk – leaving them to ponder how they can make a positive impact on the planet. Nick says: “If I’m lucky enough to get to the point in life when I’m old and grey, chatting with my grandchildren I want to know I’ve explored every inch of the planet. I believe that it’s the crazy things, the things that no one is doing, and the things that we’re afraid to do… which are in fact exactly that which leaves a positive mark on the world.”
As a runner himself, James has been competing in ultras since 2005 and has been fortunate enough to race many of the better know races across the world as well as at home in the UK. He has been fortunate to have twice represented Team GB in the 24hr format. He loves racing on any surface over any distance from Track 24hrs, to Barkley, to Badwater, to Western States and the Bob Graham Round – it’s all good!
In 2010, he started Centurion Running to give runners the opportunity to experience running 50 / 100 miles supported, on some of the UK’s most scenic trails. Since then he has directed 60 ultras including 35 x 100 milers.
He is a UKA qualified coach and works with athletes from novice through to international standard. And co-hosts the greatest podcast on the internet, the British Ultrarunning Podcast.
He is supported by Petzl and La Sportiva.
His name is Rob Pope, but you might know him as Forrest Gump. In 2018, Rob became the first person to answer one of the most asked questions in ultrarunning. “Could Forrest have actually survived his epic run”. Well, according to Rob, he could, after he himself ran over 15,600 miles in 422 days, crossing America almost five times and finishing at the same spot Forrest did in Monument Valley. As such, it seemed appropriate that he next appeared at the sharp end of the field in the 2019 Marathon des Sables finishing as the highest placing Brit/Australian, despite developing pneumonitis on the long stage. After slowly rebuilding his body after his epic US adventure, he’s ready to go long again, but first, he’s coming back to the National Running Show in an “ask me anything” style Q+A where we’ll learn more about the nitty gritty of preparing for and surviving going truly long.
Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Joshua Stevens is a professional Mountain, Ultra and Trail (MUT) runner based in Estes Park, Colorado. He is the 2019 Badwater Ultra Cup Champion and successfully completed the Badwater 135 and the Leadville 100 Trail Run double within 30-days. Following the second of two cervical spinal surgeries in 2011 resulting from direct exposure to Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) / road side bombs in Iraq he was informed that he would not run again. Three years later he ran his first 50k distance on his 44th Birthday. In the ensuing years he has become a competitive professional trail runner racing in some of the most prestigious ultra marathons in North America. In December 2017 Joshua ran 121.3 miles on a treadmill in Boulder, Colorado to raise money for a Non Profit.
Lowri Morgan is a Welsh television presenter, perhaps best known for presenting S4C’s coverage of the World Rally Championship and Adventure documentaries. However, she’s also a seriously badass ultra-runner, with a coveted 6633 Ultra finish to her name and has recently thrown herself into a unique running challenge in Snowdonia – the 333.
Geoff Brierley is an ultra mountain runner who has competed in a wide variety of races, both in the mountains and now on the road too.
He holds his clubs record for the Welsh 3000’s race (23 miles, 15 mountains 10,000ft of ascent in 24 hours) having won it each year for the past 7 and has come second in the Oggie 8 mountain race.
On road he recently ran the Bangor 10K and came 2nd in his category, and has more races planned!
Geoff has trained as a running coach and is now qualified with British Athletics to train runners of all abilities and, through his website www.focusedperformance.co.uk he shares his strategies and tips on how to improve running no matter what level you’re running at, he also offers trail running holidays in Snowdonia and overseas.focusedperformance.co.uk
Andy Palmer is the owner and race director at White Star Running, one of the biggest trail running companies in the UK. Based in Dorset, White Star currently have 15 race weekends a year with 35 separate events covering distances from 1km to Ultra. The company motto of “Keep Running Rural” tells you everything you need to know about their routes, which take in some of the most beautiful countryside in the south west, including private estates, farms, cider breweries and even a weekend of running along the Jurassic Coast. Their signature race, Giants Head Marathon in Sydling St Nicholas sells out faster than Glastonbury and the company have won multiple awards for their inclusive, family friendly and often revered events.
Gary is an Ultra runner and Head Honcho at RUNSTRONG which has 200+ members from around the world. His aim is to try to make running easier to understand for people in an info-training way. he’s also very funny. Gary recently completed The Dragons Back Race despite suffering from compartment syndrome on day 4 and has PBs from 35 min 10km to 135 miles in under 24 hours.
Joe is a registered osteopath and former Royal Marine. He specialises in using evidence based methods to help runners deal with injury and optimise performance.
Joe practices what he preaches and used his knowledge and experience to become south of England fell running champion and the winner of 2018’s man vs horse.
He currently works at London’s Olympic Park where he treats a range of runners from novices to team GB athletes.
Andy Blow has a few top 10 Ironman and 70.3 finishes and an Xterra World Age Group title to his name. He founded Precision Hydration to help athletes solve their hydration issues. He has a degree in Sport and Exercise Science and was once the Team Sports Scientist for Benetton and Renault F1 teams.
Pam Chapman Markle
Pam is a 63 grandmother and cancer survivor who has completed close to 50 ultramarathons setting age group course records in the Brazil 135, the Arkansas Traveler 100, Rocky Raccoon 100 and multiple other races. She has finished the Badwater 135 four times, setting an age group course record each time and finishing 3rd overall female in 2017. She has set the all-time age group USA records in the 100k, 100 mile and 12, 24 and 48 hour races and currently hold the USA records in the 100k, 12 hour and 24 hour races as well as the world record in the 12 hour race.
From a young age Ray has had a keen interest in sports and fitness, participating in several sports, such as; Running, Rugby League, Rugby Union, Cross Country and Boxing.
Ray served within the British Army – Infantry for 18 years, as a front-line soldier in Northern Ireland, Bosnia & Afghanistan. During his service, he also became a Boxing Coach and Endurance Trainer.
Ray decided to embrace his working background and his love of the outdoors, to become a Running Coach. He now holds the Leadership in Running Fitness qualification from UK Athletics and is working toward the Coach in Running Fitness qualification (which takes six months).
Ray has been known to run many miles, in fact during a recent (unexpected delay in India) he ran 7,652 Miles in four years!
Look out for his book, coming soon “Running For My Mind – 7,000 Miles to Freedom”, all about his four years stuck in India, over two years of which, were inside an Indian jail, for doing nothing other than his job.
Ray’s next big challenge is to complete the Ultra Trail Wales, which is a 50 Mile Ultra around the mountains of Snowdonia in August 2020.
David Hellard presents the Bad Boy Running podcast and is organiser of Beer Belly Running races, including the Great British Beerathon. He’s as known for his stupid running challenges, including leading the London Marathon for 400 meters, setting the record for the Under Round Marathon and representing England in the Beer Mile as his more serious running feats. He loves racing marathons across the globe from winning in Somaliland to craping behind a rock while protected by gunmen in Afghanistan and began his ultra-journey by finishing first Brit in the Marathon des Sables in 2016.
Jody Raynsford is co-host of the Bad Boy Running podcast. A former running journalist, his work has appeared in publications including Men’s Running, The Telegraph and The Independent. He has run over 50 marathons and 30 ultramarathons, including the Marathon des Sables and Transalpine Run. He has temporarily retired from ultrarunning to focus on 5k running.
During a long career as an international athlete, John Beattie has represented Great Britain and England at events such as the Commonwealth Games, and the World & European Cross-Country Championships. He also finished in the top 20 at both the London and New York Marathons. John has won many big road races around the UK and maintains a proud record of having broken 30 minutes for 10k every year since 2008.
Since turning his passion into his profession in 2017, John has switched roles to coaching and has helped hundreds of runners from all over the world to improve and set personal bests from 5k up to the marathon.
Renee McGregor BSc (hons) PGDIP (DIET) PGCERT(sportsnutr) RD SENr
Renee is a leading Sports specialist dietician with 20 years’ experience working in clinical and performance nutrition, with Olympic (London, 2012), Paralympic (Rio, 2016) and Commonwealth (Queensland, 2018) teams, who currently works with the GB 24 hour Running squad.
A physical activity expert and world-renowned sports scientist, Professor Greg Whyte OBE is an Olympian in modern pentathlon and a European and World Championship medalist. Well-known for his involvement in Comic Relief, assisting various celebrities in challenge events, Greg supported Jo Brand on her ‘Hell of a Walk’ from Hull to Liverpool and Radio 1’s Greg James on his 5 triathlons in 5 cities in 5 days. As a result of his work, Greg has helped to raise over £40 million for charity.
Greg is an expert in the field of sports and exercise science. Graduating from Brunel University, he furthered his studies with an MSc in human performance in the USA and completed his PhD at St. Georges Hospital Medical School, London. Greg is currently a Professor of Applied Sport and Exercise Science at Liverpool John Moores University and Director of Performance at the Centre for Health and Human Performance (CHHP) on Harley Street in London. Greg’s former roles include Director of Research for the British Olympic Association and Director of Science and Research for the English Institute of Sport.
Greg is the preeminent authority on Exercise Physiology and Sports and Exercise Performance in the UK. An internationally recognised expert in the field, Greg has extensive professional experience assessing, treating and improving the performance of patients, sporting enthusiasts and athletes ranging from cancer sufferers to celebrities attempting their first mountain summit to Gold medal seeking Olympians.
Since 2006, Greg has applied his sports science work to assist various celebrities in completing some of the toughest challenges. Greg has trained, motivated and successfully coached 33 Sport and Comic Relief Challenges including: the comedian David Walliams to swim across the English Channel the Gibraltar Straits and the length of the Thames; James Cracknell to run, cycle and swim to Africa; a team of 9 celebrities including Cheryl Cole, Chris Moyles and Gary Barlow to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro; Eddie Izzard to run a remarkable 43 marathons in 50 days; Christine Bleakley to waterski across the English Channel; Dermot O’Leary, Olly Murrs and others to cross the driest desert in Africa; John Bishop to complete ‘Bishops Week of Hell’ that involved John cycle, row and run from Paris to London; and Davina McCall in her ‘Beyond Breaking Point’ 506 mile ultra-triathlon.
In 2014 Greg was awarded an OBE for his services to Sport, Sport Science & Charity, and was voted as one of the Top 10 Science Communicators in the UK by the British Science Council. Greg’s most recent accolade was winning UK Active Awards Personality of the Year for 2019.
Hannah is one half of running duo Twice the Health, made up of H (the nuts one who runs through the desert) and E (the smart one who knows all about foods, and includes bike and swim in her setup). Best friends from uni, the two are never not wearing matching in clothes and smiles. On top of taking on crazy challenges, the girls run free run clubs all over the UK, supported by their team of top pacers who volunteer every week to make ‘We are Runners’ happen. As well as race reviews, you can find recipes and running tips over on their website.
Emily is one half of running duo Twice the Health, the other half being H. Best friends, who met university over pre-drinks and running. Now they are always in matching kit while taking on whatever upcoming adventure. Head over to their social media pages and website for running based strength training, race reviews, recipes, and some good old fashioned motivation! Alongside Twice The Health the girls have been growing their own FREE run clubs which they recently re-named ‘We are Runners’
Jordan, who is probably better known as @projectmarathongirl on Instagram is a passionate marathon, and recently turned, ultra runner! Jordan isn’t afraid of taking on a challenge, and last year saw her leave the road behind and take on some incredible races, from the mountains in Austria, to winning her first 250km multistage ultra marathon in the Wadi Rum desert! Last year Jordan also set up PMGCoaching and now helps runners from all over the world to achieve their running goals.
Paul Addicott, #pickupthepace paul, is an experienced pacer who has paced over 80 events worldwide. Paul blogs about his experiences and aims to make running more fun, and helps runners along the way to their PB’s. If you are looking for a sub 4 marathon the chances are you will end up on his #funbus one day soon.
Keri Wallace is a fell runner, skyrunner, climber and writer. She is Summer Mountain Leader (SML) and Rock Climbing Instructor (RCI) qualified – and is a mother of two toddlers. Keri races her first mountain marathon in 2007 and has since gone on to win several of these events in various categories. She has been running and racing in the Scottish mountains for over a decade and lives in Glencoe. In 2010 she undertook a multi-stage solo traverse of the Bob Graham, Paddy Buckley and Charlie Ramsay Rounds for charity (over 10 days). Keri has over 5 years of Mountain Rescue experience in Glencoe. Last year she qualified for a place in the UK Skyrunning Team for the Mamores Vertical Kilometre 2018, which she completed just three days after finishing 12th in the GORE-TEX® Transalpine-Run (a 260km/16,000m multi-stage trail race crossing the Alps from Germany to Italy over 7 days). Keri has a PhD in neurobiology and works part-time as a freelance sports/adventure writer.
Rob served in the military for 25 years until he was medically discharged with depression and PTSD in 2016. While his father was fighting cancer Rob started running ultra-marathons. Unfortunately, his father passed away but not before Rob made one simple vow, that every time he got breathless, like those suffering with lung cancer do, he would make it count and raise money for charity. He set himself a challenge of running what are reputed to be the toughest, highest and coldest foot races in the world.
The battle with depression has been one big constant struggle for Rob. The dark places his mind takes him has ultimately cost him many things. From relationships, to a job he wanted to do since he was 8 years old. As a result, he hit his lowest point in 2013 and ended up in a mental hospital, after attempting to end his own life. However, throughout all this Rob continued on his running challenge. In 2011 Rob went and completed the Marathon des Sables, in 2013 he added the Everest Marathon and he finish in April 2018 quite literally on top of the world with the North Pole Marathon.
Rob is a high functioning depressive who has used what he has learnt from running in the extremes to help him cope with his depression. He applies the same basic principles of preparing for an extreme running event as he does to managing his life. Rob now runs every single day, and in 2018 he started track running, he is finding running 1500m in a respectable time as much as a challenge as running an ultra-marathon. But, overall Rob just loves to be able to run, it has given him so much.RunningRob.com
A coach who is passionate about helping individuals find fulfilment in every aspect of their lives. Works exclusively with a number of charities and their 3,000 Virgin Money London Marathon runners, with the goal of reducing dropout rates and incentivising higher levels of fundraising.
He does this though the 12 years of involvement with the event, the understanding of the individuals involved, and educating them around his concept of PreFormance®. Preparing the body & mind for the lifestyle demands of getting to the startline. Nutrition, strength & conditioning, intelligent training, recovery, breathing, and other protocols. Training for a running event, isn’t just about running. Neither is crossing the finishing line the hardest one to cross.
He uses the event as a platform to inspire people to find Purpose, create Balance, and to Change the World.
Sports Science BSc / Level 5 Biomechanics Coach / NLP Practitioner / Clinical Hypnotherapist
Mantra: Work Smart, Play Hard, Dad Harder
Jamie is a 25 year old motivational speaker, adaptive athlete with a below-knee amputation and ASICS Frontrunner from Basingstoke, Hampshire. Jamie inspires others through sharing his own story of perseverance. After developing a chronic pain condition, Jamie made the difficult decision to undergo a below-knee amputation in September 2016 and subsequently needed a revision surgery in September 2017. As part of his rehabilitation following surgery, Jamie has learnt how to walk with his prosthesis. Jamie uses a Blade XT running blade from Blatchford clinic in Basingstoke. Jamie competes internationally for Judo under the ‘Special Needs/Adaptive’ category, without the use of his prosthesis and is currently ranked second in the World. British Judo do not currently have separate competitions for those with physical disabilities so Jamie generally competes against those with mild learning difficulties. At a National level, Jamie achieved a silver medal at the British Judo Championships as well as a silver medal at his debut international Judo competition in November 2017. He has also achieved a Silver medal at the World Judo Games in 2019. Jamie is currently the only lower-limb amputee in the world to compete internationally and he hopes to continue representing his country at an international level. As well as Judo, Jamie also competes internationally for Obstacle Course Racing. He is a Tough Mudder Ambassador and has completed the most courses out of any other UK adaptive athlete. Jamie has completed over 70 Tough Mudder courses, 4 competitive 8 hour endurance races, as well as World’s Toughest Mudder, a 24-hour endurance race in the US. Jamie has competed at the European and World Obstacle Course Race Championships and placed 3rd in one category, against 60+ able-bodied athletes. Jamie’s ambition is to be a role model to other young people who are in similar situations to his. He wants to inspire them to believe that they can overcome challenges and see the opportunities open to them in both the world of work and sport. He challenges stereotypes which people may associate with his impairment and his acceptance speech for his Gold Duke of Edinburgh award was an inspiration to two hundred people and has lead him to meeting with the Royal Family. Jamie has been invited on several occasions to speak at Buckingham Palace as well as St James’s Palace and Hampton Court. He intends to continue to engage people through events, social media and his public speaking for schools, colleges and organisations.